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Showing posts with label salvation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label salvation. Show all posts

Monday, April 10, 2017

The Atman (world) Hospital


symbolic

                “This is sure a junky, old hospital,” Jyoti grumbled. “As soon as I can I’ll be glad to move on to a better place. Why in the world is it called Atman hospital anyways? “
                Vivek stood behind the floor-length mirror in the staff washroom. She arranged her nurses’ cap just so on her long wavy hair that was formed in a knot at her neck. “That’s the Hindu word relating to ‘World’ or person. This huge hospital holds a cross-section of people from all walks of life. "
                “It looks like most of them are from the untouchable caste to me,”
                “Not so!” Vivek’s eyes flashed. “And besides we are not allowed to call them that!” How she wished to really tell this snobbish newcomer off. Every day since Jyoti had volunteered to work in Shalputa’s inner city hospital she had found something to complain about. If she finds it so dreadful why doesn’t she just leave?  She obviously doesn’t know a thing about the caste system and the benefits of it! Why if -----------wasn’t from the caste he is, he wouldn’t have received the assistance needed to find a bed in even this economy hospital.

                Jyoti’s voice cut through her thoughts. “Pardon me, your royal highness, and what caste are you from?”

                Vivek flushed red but didn’t deign to answer. She thinks her western ways are so superior to ours, but they aren’t, they simply aren’t. The Eastern Culture is as varied and beautiful as a rich tapestry.

While trying to keep a tight rein on her emotions, Vivek turned and sashayed out of the room.
Fifteen minutes later, while she was chatting with other caregivers at the nurses’ station, she lifted her eyes to see Jyoti strolling languidly towards them, coffee cup in hand.

                “What took you so long?” Leila, always the outspoken one, demanded. “Shift change was fifteen minutes ago, and Report is over.”

                “Oh, this and that,” Jyoti chose a chair and sipped indolently of her steaming beverage.

Vivek saw a spot on Jyoti’s uniform but Jyoti either hadn’t noticed or more likely didn’t care.
                “It looks like a long night is before us,” Jenna sighed.
                Jyoti shrugged, “The moaning and groaning doesn’t seem any worse than usual.”
                Vivek leaned back and peered down the dimly lit hall. A look of concern shadowed her features, but she kept her thoughts to herself. Will tonight be like every other night, with the staff enjoying the comforts of the brightly lighted lounge and only superficially going through the motions of making sure everyone is all right?
            Last night she had verbalized this concern, but Jyoti had responded. “They will come to us if they need to. They can ring their bell.”
                Vivek had nodded but she knew better.  How many would actually call? They are afraid that every act of service we provide will cost them something. Our ways are so strange and foreign to them that they will shrink back and think that…Vivek glanced at Jyoti and her lips curved slightly; that they are untouchables.
                Just then a bell tinkled from somewhere down the hall.
                Leila glanced pointedly at Jyoti. “That’s your patient.”
                Jyoti sighed, “I’m not quite done my coffee. It will be cold when I get back.”
                “Must you always put your own needs before others?” Leila snapped. “See there it rang again. It must be urgent.”
                Jyoti checked the number against the chart. “That only old Mrs. Farah. Probably wants to use the commode again.”

                “Well, what if you needed to use the commode, and couldn’t wait…” Feeling embarrassed, Jenna’s voice trailed off.
                “I’ll go,” Vivek said quietly.
                “Nah, I’m almost done.”
                “If that what’s Mrs. Farah wants, you’ll need help anyways.” Vivek started down the hall and Jyoti trailed after her.

                They attended to Mrs. Farah’s needs in a professional manner, but Vivek’s heart ached for the elderly woman. I almost wish I would have gone alone. Mrs. Farah is so sweet and frail. I wonder if she is afraid of the great beyond. She would never call out to ask for spiritual help, but shouldn’t we be offering it, somehow?

                The long night wore onThe girls went the rounds when it was time, and answered the bells when required to, but Vivek wished they could do more.

                Around three o’clock that night, the girls couldn’t resist the urge to slumber and sleep although they knew it was against the rules. When Jyoti was sound asleep on the couch, Jenna dozing in the rocking chair, and Leila deep in the pages of a book, Vivek took her little candle and slipped away into the darkness. She went into one room after another, the tiny light illuminating her face and a small area in front of her.  Some were sound asleep, but not everyone. She knelt beside Hanzia’s bed. The tiny child was weeping for her mother so Vivek smoothed a lock of hair off the small, delicate face and offered words of comfort.
                A little further on Gabi was muttering and tossing, sleepless. Vivek knew he must be in a lot of discomfort from the fractures suffered in a gang war earlier that week so thought of offering him a sedative.

                Gabi looked like he was going to lunge at her with his fists and hurled a few choice expletives her way, so she backed out hurriedly.
                Gabi stared at her in dismay. Why did I ever act like that? She looked like a ministering angel. I am so used to having to protect myself, but what if, just what if she had intended to show mercy? Vivek didn’t know how he felt in his heart and avoided him next time she passed by.
                Eventually, Vivek reached Mrs. Farah’s room supposing she would be fast asleep by now. The round orbs that were the old woman’s eyes were wide and staring as Vivek crept closer. Vivek placed the candle on the bedside table and knelt beside her. She placed the wrinkled, claw-like hand between her own, and stroked it gently.
                “Oh, Vivek, thank you for coming.” Mrs. Farah murmured. Vivek saw that her cheeks were damp where a tear or two had coursed down it.
                “Would you care to talk?”
                In the silence that followed Vivek dimly heard a bell tinkle, and the sound of passing feet.
                “What is beyond this life?” Mrs. Farah asked hesitantly.
                As Vivek quietly shared her hope of eternal life with God, Mrs. Farah listened eagerly.
"If we confess that we have sinned to Jesus," Vivek continued, "He will take them all away. Jesus has prepared a place in Heaven for them that love and serve Him."
                Eventually, Mrs. Farah fell into a deep and peaceful sleep, so Vivek let herself out of the room.
                Far down the hall, she saw the brightly lighted nurses’ station with the staff all dressed in white.

They were enjoying each other’s fellowship, which was pleasant, yet here in the dark and gloomy corridors, only the occasional beam of light was searching out the needs of a suffering society. Some cautioned against penetrating the darkness with all its dangers, and reminded her that they can come to us but once again Vivek wondered how many would actually dare.

          She slipped into a comfortable recliner and had nearly dozed off when Jenna’s words floated into her consciousness.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Running Out of Oil

The Ten Virgins
Maidens so sweet with your lamps all bright
Lighting the way through the starry night
Waiting with music and lilting voice
Arrayed in garments of finest choice.

Sundown has darkened the village streets
Ten drowsy maidens are fighting sleep
While cheery lanterns are growing dim
Will they expire ‘ere the groom comes again?

There’s a delay and the girls slump down
All fast asleep in their bridal gowns
Glad shouts are ringing down the lane
The bridegroom comes make your lanterns shine.

The girls rouse quickly their lamps to trim
But some will lament that their oil is gone.
Oh virgins listen that have to share
You won’t run out for the Lord put it there.

The widow's vessels all had enough
Of oil from God when she but asked
And you will to for your sister’s need
It is blessed by God, so please give heed.

Marilyn Friesen

www.marilynshistoricalbooks.com

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Geese Taught Him

There was once a man who did not believe in either the birth of Christ nor the spiritual meaning behind it, and was skeptical even of God. He and his family lived in a farming community. His wife was a devout believer and diligently raised her children in faith. He sometimes gave her a hard time about her belief and mocked her religious observances.

"It's all nonsense--why would God lower himself and become a human like us? Its such a ridiculous story," he   said.

One snowy day, she and the children left for church while he stayed home. After they departed, the winds grew stronger and the snow turned into a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire for the evening.

Then he heard a loud thump, something hitting against the window...and still another thump. He looked outside but could not see anything. So he ventured outside for a better view. In the field beside his house, of all the strangest things, a flock of geese. They were apparently flying to look for a warmer area down south, but they had been caught in the snowstorm. The storm had become to blinding and violent for the geese to fly or see their way. They were stranded on his farm, with no food or shelter, unable to do more than flutter their wings and fly in aimless circles. He had compassion for them and wanted to help them. He thought to himself, the barn would be a great place for them to stay. It is warm and safe; surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm. So he opened the barn doors for them.

He waited, watching them, hoping they would notice the open barn and go inside. Nevertheless, they did not not notice the barn or realize what it could mean for them. He moved closer toward them to get their attention, but they  just moved away from him out of fear.

He went into the house and came back with some bread, broke it up, and made a bread trail to the barn. They still did not catch on.

Starting to get frustrated, he went over and tried to shoo them toward the barn. They panicked and scattered in every direction except toward the barn. Nothing he did could get them into the barn where there was warmth, safety, and shelter. Feeling totally frustrated, he exclaimed, "why don't they follow me? Can't they see this is the only place where they can survive the storm? How can I possibly get them into the one place that can save them?"

He thought for a moment and realized that they just would not follow a human. He said to himself, "How can I possibly save them? The only way would be for me to become like those geese. If only I can become like one of them. They would follow me and I would lead them to safety."

At that moment, he stopped and considered what he had said. The words reverberated in his mind: if only I could become like one of them, then I could save them. Then, at last he understood God's heart towards mankind...and he fell on his knees.

There is a verse that goes with this story. John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Author unknown 

Friday, February 19, 2016

Alone and Suffering

This poem is my gift to you  if you feel all alone and as if no one cares.  If you can, print it out and tuck it in a safe place where you can always find it. Contact me if you need someone to talk to.

You are the one
That needs a home
A mother's love
A Daddy's care

You are the one
Who haunts my dreams
Disturbs my sleep
With your sad stare.

You are the one 
Who will be sighing
In some dark place
Alone tonight.

You are the one
I'd love to find
Take to my heart
And hold you tight.

Oh Precious Child
Just pray to God
And trust in Him
I know He cares

Oh Troubled Child
I pray someone 
Will Find you soon
And call you theirs.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Silence? In Heaven?!

“There was silence in heaven for about the space of half an hour.” (Revelation 8:1) Silence in heaven?! What a unique thought. I imagine Heaven brimming with melodious, none intrusive sounds. What would cause all those millions of joyful angels to fold their wings and wait? What were they waiting for? It seems like even the flowers, rippling like multicolored seas of beauty, were still. And what about the people; those that had been redeemed and milling around on those golden streets, normally so happy to share, to fellowship with each other, why were they mute?            `
I think they knew, and they were holding their collective breath.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Predator


Now why did I have to dream about him?  In spite of things that happened in my childhood and teen years I haven’t been plagued by those kinds of dreams. Why now?
                There was a large glossy topped table between us but it was obvious that he was after me. I would rapidly walk a few steps then stop. So would he. He would cross his arms and give me a slightly sneering grin. I glanced around at the wood paneled walls. No windows and doors in sight, no escape route. I started moving again and so did he. This kept on for a while. I knew he was just wearing me down in his tormentingly leisurely way.

                I dropped to my knees, putting my head on my arms, and cried out to God. Then my alarm rang.  He vanished, but I was still troubled. Why did I dream about him?
                My husband had an explanation that echoed my own.
                “It was a good dream,” he said. “Because you knew where to turn, you cried out to God.” (Something like that.) “Your Dad represents evil to you.”
                But why did I dream it? Why, why? And then I knew. There are those of you that are facing situations like that. You and ‘him’ seem to be going round and round the table.  He ‘knows’ he will wear you down eventually and is gloating. But will he? Does he have to? No. Sure you have an adversary, but you also have an Advocate. Jesus is our protector and guide out of difficult situations.


                But do you have an advocate? Have you found Jesus to be a haven of rest ‘in the trying scenes of life’ as one song put it?  He doesn’t wave a magic wand and make all your troubles disappear but He will be there for you making you stronger, giving you comfort. Admit that you can’t ‘escape’ on your own. Admit that you are poor and needy in need of a Savior and commit everything to the lovingly Heavenly Father’s care. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Some People Deserve to Die--And Some Don't




 Back in 1908, or so, (yes, that was before my time,) something happened that touched my heart. Someone did something awful, really, really awful and he killed another human being. He deserves to be condemned to death, right? But his attorney saw things differently. I think he must have visited with this prisoner many times, and became convinced the man deeply regretted what he had done. Most likely the guilty man didn’t give a whole list of excuses why he committed that horrendous act. He knew he was a sinner, and his advocate knew that he knew so he pled his cause.

In those days the man probably didn’t have a hope or not being hung from a tree or whatever means of punishment they used in his area, so it came to him as a surprise when the verdict was changed to a life sentence.  There were tears of gratitude in his eyes when he was led away.

I wish I could fill in the names of the key characters, my written source had not included them, but let’s put our own names into the blank.

We have been condemned to die, we are guilty. Our sin separates as from God. We can offer a multitude of excuses why we are like we are, but they won’t get us anywhere, certainly not to Heaven. An advocate came, and plead our cause. Perhaps it was because of His deep sacrificial love-I’m talking about Jesus now- we began to feel remorse then repentant. Yes, we admit, we deserve to die, but we are sorry, very sorry. The death sentence is lifted.

Do we run away scot free? Do we want to? Not if we truly realize what Jesus saved us from. In gratitude we will offer to be bond slaves to Jesus. It’s a whole lot easier than to be imprisoned by guilt and sin. It’s a whole lot easier in another way also. There is warmth and joy in such close fellowship.

What do you choose?


http://www.authorsden.com/marilynffriesen