It was one of those pleasant afternoons when Bhagavan was seated in the portico in front of the parched millions who thirst for a mere glance, a mere word, a mere smile or just a mere sight of His countenance, but it made a difference to my life and the lives of many who were close enough to follow and gather with eager hands the pearls of wisdom that were showered by Bhagavan.
"Will you do anything that I will ask of you?" demanded the Lord.
"Yes, I will." came the reply.
"Anything, you mean?"
"Yes, anything that you command."
"Well... Then eat two fish tomorrow and come," ordered the Lord.
I was speechless....
"Will you do that? Tell me now." Bhagavan insisted on an answer while that familiar mischievous smile played on His lips.
I was thinking while all the eyes, human and divine, were riveted to my face, waiting for a reply.
I thought...if I say "Yes, I will do", with the courage (if not the faith) the Lord might scold me for not having followed His teachings .
On the other hand, if I say "I won't", I might be reprimanded for lack of faith in the Lord's command.
I was in a fix!! .
A few moments passed...My heart skipped a few beats even as I was evaluating the pros and cons of the decision I was going to make. There was pin-drop silence... to be broken only by the divine reproach
"You do not have any faith. Will Swami ever ask you to do such things? You must reply with firm faith that Swami will never ask such things of anyone."
Academic education was over at the divine feet. It was time to pray for further guidance. My heart searched for every opportunity to present its plight and beseech His grace. Finally, I succeeded when He chose to stop by me while gliding during the Darshan.
"What grade did you get in the exams?" enquired the Baba.
With a twinkle in my eyes I raised myself to reach Him and reply, "Swami!'O' Grade (Outstanding)'
"I know ...I know, Sir!" said the Lord with a smile. "Swami! It is Your Grace." I submitted.
"Yes! Grace. You have got the grade due to grace", revealed the Lord.
"What ever happens is for your good."
This was the 5th time I heard Him say during the interview that He granted to our family. He beckoned us yet again for a family photograph...
I rushed with my little camera to capture that timeless moment, when to my ill fate I realized that the flash had failed. Well...I tried again and again but all in vain. The Lord willingly waited with the other family members to be captured on that thin film of silver. However, the heartless camera that had worked perfectly well till then, refused to oblige.
Swami, who was a silent witness to this wreck, took pity on my plight, " So sorry." He commanded me to beckon the boy with the camera sitting outside the interview room. I carried out the command and there we were having a group photo that now included me too. After this brief photo session, Swami said,
"See! Your camera did not work. Even that was for your own good. Now all of you could be together in the photograph. So you see whatever happens is for your good."
Swami! Bless us that whatever might happen we should always have faith in you," prayed my younger brother.
The Almighty replied, "Yes! You must have firm faith; however, clouds of doubts will come, which is but natural. Still, you must persist, wait for the winds to blow them away and you shall see the sun again. The sun is always there. It is only that the clouds hamper your vision.
Doubts are but passing clouds and they bring the testing times along. Only if you pass the test will they promote you to the higher standard. Is it not so?"
What you are is God's gift to you and what you become is your gift to God."
By Sri Madhusudhan Rao Naidu, Former student of Baba's Institute.
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