Family, the Smallest Unit of a Nation
"Good morning, Lucy." Paaru greets Lucy.
"Good morning, Paaru. So, how does the day treat you?" Lucy inquired about her.
"So many things have happened at home today. You know, my father drinks alcohol from dawn and to dusk, and today he is behaving like a devil. He has punctured my mom by beating and kicking her. I cannot bear it any longer. Her face is all blue. How much she bears his tortures. Could you please come to my home and talk to my mom? I don’t know how to console her." Paaru shares her pain with Lucy.
"Paaru, today is a holiday. I want to come to your house and want to meet your mom and dad," Lucy expresses her wish.
Lucy is a farsighted person and looks at everything beyond the ordinary. This talent is one of the significant differences between Lucy and other students and even the teachers. But she is very humble and cordial. Both friends have now reached Paaru’s house and can see her dad sitting on a chair and barking at someone.
Paaru introduces Lucy to her dad, and he welcomes her.
He gestures her to sit on the floor and drops back on the chair in his drunken state.
Lucy goes in with Paaru to meet her mom. While going into the room, Lucy makes him go up along with the chair and makes him stick to the chair to avoid falling from the chair, his head almost touching the ceiling.
Lucy consoles Paaru’s mom and hugs her with so much love. She gives her the fruits she has brought. Paaru’s mom revives at the gesture of Lucy’s affection and love.
Meanwhile, Paaru’s dad wakes up from his alcoholic slumber, and he notices himself in the chair, but up, his head almost touching the ceiling. It terrifies him, and he does not know what’s happening to him. He pretends to be courageous and keeps quiet, but not for a long time. He bursts out crying in fear.
"Parvathi, come here, what’s happening to me?" He calls Paaru in horror. Paaru does not know about the special mental powers of Lucy because she uses her dominance with extreme secrecy. Paaru and her mom go out of the room to see what is happening to him on the veranda. Lucy follows them. What they see there mesmerizes and frightens them. He’s trying to come down but not able to. He’s afraid to jump because it can break his legs. This fear and crises make him come to his senses. Noticing this, Lucy brings him down and stops at three feet above the floor. He tries to come out with great relief, but he gets stuck to the chair as if someone applied glue to the chair. His fear multiplies. He realizes what he is experiencing and thinks that this may be a punishment from God for his evil and self-interested lifestyle. Lucy releases him from the chair. Standing on the floor, he looks at the mysterious chair in total confusion and fear. Unable to see any glue on the chair, even after repeatedly checking by sitting on it and standing up a few times, wonder has struck him. He doesn’t experience any gum effect. Paaru and her mom bewilder at what they see.
"Mom, why is this blue colour?" Pointing at the cheek of Paaru’s mom, Lucy asks her. Hearing it and recognizing the reason for it, Paaru’s dad hugs his wife, crying aloud, regretting over what he has done to her, and kisses her cheek where the blood has clotted and in blue.
"I’m very sorry." Saying this, he sobs in repentance.
Paaru is seeing the first time her father in his normal sense. Recognizing this, Paaru goes and hugs him tightly, and he reconciles with her too.
"Dad, don’t hurt my mom. She is sick. I also find it difficult to study when you disturb." Paaru tells her dad.
"Paaru, my daughter, I don’t know why I behave like a devil when I drink. I don’t want to drink, but I cannot control, a strange inner force compels me to drink, and I become prey to it. You children, please help me to be a good, loving husband and father. I shall never hurt your mom, Paaru. She has only sufferings since our marriage and never any love or peace. This is what my alcoholism has done to her and the family." Paaru’s dad confesses his inner turmoil and what he wishes to be.
"Dad, your honest desire never to drink alcohol and to become a new person will take place. God, your Creator, wants to help you achieve what you desire for. If you have a will, you will find the ways to be a new creation. You need to depend on God, who is the source of all good. And that will bring God consciousness to you. Once you nurture God consciousness, the Satan who tempts will flee away from you," Lucy suggests to him.
Then, Lucy instructs the three, " thank and praise our Creator God who is the source of everything good, thank him for everything you have. You have a roof to stay under, you have a well to fetch water from, and many more things you know you have for which to thank and praise God, the provider. Thank God for the gifts of nature, the Sun and the Moon, the stars, plants and trees, rivers and oceans, ponds and wells, mountains and valleys, your fields, and for each member of the family, for your relations and neighbors. All these come from God like the rays of the Sun. They are all God’s gifts to us for our growth. Thank God for the air we breathe in. During this Corona so much money people paid to get the life saving air, and many perished because they could not get oxygen. When you praise and thank God for all that you have, God will give you more opportunities to thank him. Never forget just to thank God even for all negative experiences like weakness, sickness and other problems. God can prevent these from coming to you, but did not. That means through these negative experiences he has a purpose to renew your life. When that purpose gets fulfilled, your negative experiences will change into happiness. Recognizing this, thank and praise God for all unhealthy and painful experiences of your life. Thus this house will experience prosperity, peace and harmony."
"This is wonderful, my child, Lucy. I shall follow now onward what you have told us. I have been always cursing for all my troubles. Now I see I can use everything negative for our own good." Paaru’s mom expresses her enlightenment.
"That means, Covid-19, that’s ravaging the world has come to the human society with a purpose, Lucy?" Paaru’s dad shows his understanding.
"Yes, nothing happens without a purpose. Without the knowledge of God, absolutely nothing takes place. God, who has created us, wants us to be close to Him. For that, avoid everything that chases away the presence of God from family life. We’re the temples of the Holy Spirit of God and allow God to dwell in us and thus in our families. Our homes are the temples of the Holy Spirit. God wants to stay in our homes, all institutions, and offices. When God’s healing presence remains in our families, we can build up a good family life, mix with others, celebrate various festivals the way we can afford to bring happiness and gratitude. Keeping a good relationship with our neighbours brings connectedness. We are all connected and to nature. Living in gratitude is the trick of experiencing happiness and joy. When we are close to God, related to nature, and to all creatures, power from God flows into us.
Our human tendency is when we face a helpless crisis, threats to life, we turn to God; otherwise, we take things for granted, and worldliness creeps into our lifestyle. Thus we go away from our Creator God, the provider. Then we turn our hearts toward riches, all pleasures of the world, and become separated from the Creator. People get involved in various sins hurting God, who takes care of us. Women fight for women’s freedom, and what have they achieved? They have earned a law to kill their babies in their wombs. In fifty-three countries, abortion has become legal to murder their babies in their wombs. People get into all kinds of criminal activities and have joined with Satan against God." Lucy explains to them the current situation.
"God, who created, loves us very much and wants us all to be with him forever, allows Covid-19 like viruses enter our human society. God wakes us up from the slumber of sin and corruption. People lose consciousness of sin, no repentance over their crimes against humanity and lead a life of inner blindness. Corona, like pandemic, can open our inner blindness and correct our ways by turning us back to God. When God’s healing presence flow into our lives, the pandemic will run away from human society. People have been crying for freedom from virus infections but no improvement. It’s high time people change their ways of life, and do justice, fight against injustice, protect the poor and helpless instead of looting them and thus bring peace and brotherhood. Corona will go away by itself. God has certainly a purpose in not preventing the virus from entering human society, and unless the people meet that purpose, Corona virus may not go away completely. Corona virus may change but something else like black fungus will torment human beings till human beings meet God’s purpose. A cause-and-effect theory is active here. By the time people meet the purpose o of God’s allowing the pandemic to torture his children whom he created, the people will be close to God and will have a new culture where they are at ease to live harmoniously. It may take years. Transforming all the human beings may be the meaning of ’end of the world’ and the new culture will be the new world." Lucy clarifies that everything that happens has a purpose and cause and shows the end of the world.
"Thank you, Lucy, you have opened my inner blindness and I promise you, we begin a life that is a blessing to each other in our family and we will be a blessing to our neighbors." Paaru’s dad expresses his wishes and determination to enter a new life.
"We praise and thank God for our own good, and God does not need our praises. When we thank and praise God, our negativity changes, hope in His protection increases in us. God forgives our sins, hearts get united and positive relationship builds up, our sicknesses get healed and we gain strength and freshness of life. So we move closer to the Light, our Saviour God. This will give us a healthy attitude to allow happenings to happen in our life for our own happiness sake. Only God can give us peace and joy. Satan gives us sorrow, quarrel, hopelessness, frustration and destruction." Lucy explains the operation and actions of two opposing powers in a human person.
"Read the scripture of your religion, and know how God sustains and protects us. This will help you build up the sense of the divine. The Creator God is the Lord of everything. So we give credit to him for everything we possess. We have not asked for it, but he, out of love for us, has given to us. Our life is a gift from God, and we have to nurture and preserve it instead of destroying. Prosperity will then come into our lives." Lucy helps them understand the reason for prosperity.
"Have you ever thought of this?" Every evening many people go to bed with various plans, but many of them can never have time to see the morning light or accomplish any of their dreams for their future. Instead, others get them ready for their funeral service. They cannot carry any wealth they accumulated, perhaps unjustly, to their tomb, and all their plans also go with them to the grave. So we have to build up a life of gratitude. Our life is like bubbles in the air and can disappear at any moment. Lucy makes them understand the connection between the Creator God and the creatures and the longevity of human life.
"I have never heard such wisdom in my life," Paaru’s mom looking at her husband and daughter, wonders, "Lucy my child, God who wants our happiness has brought you to this house, and we’re blessed because you’ve come here." The trickling down tears was visible on the cheeks of the family.
"When our hearts get filled with gratitude, we experience joy and freedom. The function of every religion ought to make God’s presence felt among all people. When individuals experience God’s presence in their lives, the families where they belong to experience God and find their family life meaningful. In such families, fear of God can be present. As a result, unity, love, peace and joy, respect and concern for each other can be their personal experience. Only God-fearing families can build up a mature, peace-loving, progressive country that can live in peace with neighboring countries. Therefore, everyone must work hard to create this unity and presence of God, and fight against all the divisive forces operating in the name of any particular religion because true God does not live in them." Lucy shares with them about true and false religions.
"Whichever religion has the absence of God can be violent, egocentric, disparaging other religions, and that can come from Satan, God’s enemy. In such God-absent religions, man-made gods and goddesses will be plenty, and their devotees have to protect such gods and goddesses with weapon, violence, murder, terrorism, and general peacelessness can be certain to experience there. A simple principle of spiritual life is enough to discern what spirit is present in any religion. Whatever comes from God will bring peace and harmony, and it does well for the common good. Whatever comes from Satan and man-made gods will go against the common good and lose even the existing peace and harmony. God is Just, love, the Truth, the Life and the Way. Wherever people practice injustices, falsehood, sectarianism, enmity, fanaticism, threat to life and property and coexistence, God is not there." She gives an understanding of discernment.
"Lucy, we have studied that family is the smallest unit of a nation. That means a family has to be well-groomed to fit for a great nation. A family has to learn to tolerate different cultures around them, learn to accept to live in unity in diversity. Isn’t it? How can we achieve it?" Paaru presents her searching question.
"That’s a thought-provoking question, Paaru. What we learn from our family will help us be tolerant or intolerant to others, self-centred or selfless, greedy or generous, violent or compassionate. It begins with our family itself, there we have the training." Lucy expresses the foundational experiences of a great nation.
"From your own family experience, could you please explain to us how you learned all these Lucy, my friend? You are already having these characteristics of living in unity in diversity, selflessness, generosity, respecting all religions, and appreciating goodness in everyone. You are very good at dealing with tough characters with ease and concern. Please share with us." Paaru becomes very personal with Lucy.
"My dad was an alcoholic, my mom took pride in her pet dog, and costly mobile and spent most of the time on the mobile. She had given an impression that her mobile was her husband. Thank God, both of them had a conversion experience and both of them really changed into lovely people. They were very serious about their life. We started family prayer together, had meals together, strictly avoided phone and TV at meals, talked pleasantly, appreciated each other instead of accusations and quarrels. We accepted each other’s faults and failures with patience and focused on a life of positivity. Dad spoke nothing negative of mom in front of us, so did mom. This helped us respect our parents, respect elders and all. Parents taught us to learn to draw something good out of all unpleasant situations and to face it with forbearance. We avoided every form of competition between parents and the siblings and nurtured positive vibes in our family. My parents became generous, compassionate, accepted our neighbor Hindus, Muslims, and people of lower strata of society. My eldest sister used to share with us a lot of wonderful qualities of all these different people, and that gave me an interest in all of them and looked at them as friends."
"My observation made me understand how the high caste people looked down upon the people of lower strata of life in the society. Reading of Bible and praying over it made me take certain decisions in my life to live for others whatever class, caste or religion they belong to. My parents encouraged it, and we all helped others and accepted them as they are. This brought a tremendous sense of relatedness to all, irrespective of class or caste or religion. They appreciated us for it. So, we were more encouraged to do so. Then it became part and parcel of our lifestyle, and many started following our way of life. To tell you the truth, it was Lord Jesus who guided us and helped us to get rid of many evils in us and become humane and good family, though there is still room to grow. Parents instilled in us a special love for Jesus and Mother Mary, the mother of Jesus. Our village started changing, became helpful to all villagers. We all Hindus, Muslims, Christians and Scheduled caste people have a beneficial relationship with each other today. We respect each other and help those who are financially poor in the village. So, though different, we have unity and love among us all. Initially, we had a lot of resistance, and frictions from some of them. Some struggled hard to break the barrier of casteism. When they understood the preciousness of human life, things started changing. We faced it with patience, understanding and dialogue. We all practice the basic lessons of a healthy family and village today." Lucy has described how she learned many precious things about family life, though with great painful struggles.
"Apart from what I have already spoken about, I like to share with you few vital points I consider as most important. We, parents and children, together with discussing our income and expenditure, make all decisions together. That’s how we have learned to manage a family responsibly. Before we present our needs, we reflect on whether parents can afford the income we have. As a result, none of us children feels ignored, but our parents consider us very important. Our parents’ understanding relationship with us children has taught us to be alert to the needs of our parents and siblings. We have realized the urgent needs of financially low-income families in our village, and we used to help them generously. At home, parents gave us the freedom to express ourselves frankly. Thus we have learned to speak out boldly before any crowd. We are cautious to keep negativity away from us and be courageous to articulate the truth and justice.
A spiritual wisdom Jesus has given to me is this. Whenever I pray for those who dislike me or have harmed me, I have always experienced a positive power filling my being and breaking the internal constraints, and I help them. They have always become wonderful friends now. If God is present in our families, we can build up a healthy nation. Family is the smallest unit of any country." Lucy concludes her sharing of personal experiences of family life.
Paaru and her parents express their gratitude for what Lucy has done to them. Her mom is thrilled, thanks Lucy profusely for the timely visit and for helps to save her family.
"Lucy, I’m very grateful to you for helping my daughter, Paaru. She had told me the day she had a conversion experience through you. Years ago, under your initiative, you all went for a hygiene consciousness, social work to a village, and my daughter got angry with you and even called the poor villagers belonging to low caste as dogs. You had asked her a question, ’Paru, if someone else calls you a dog, will you like it?’ That only had changed her mind and felt compassion for human beings irrespective of any caste, class, or religion, and later she became your best friend." Paaru’s mom reminded Lucy how she, with her wisdom, brought her daughter to her proper sense and helped her to repent over her corrupted mind and to become a dignified young woman." Paaru’s mom expresses gratitude to Lucy.
Hugging Lucy and shedding tears of joy, Paaru tells her mom and dad, "I don’t know what magic she did on that day, a dog who was at the end of that road, went up, and came towards me in the air. The dog stood in front of me in the air; it horrified me. Lucy asked me that question, and I judged it as God’s action to save me. In that fear and wonder, my mental block was removed followed by a significant realization and change in me." Paaru reveals the secret to all.
Lucy smiles at Paaru and returns an affectionate hug, saying nothing.
"Dad, mom, she is a noble character, loves all the children in the school and takes care of all younger ones. She, as the Captain of the school, tries to know everyone personally. She respects all human beings and teaches us God is in every religion, therefore, respect every religion and never disparage any religion. Because of her this attitude towards all religions, many students in the school want to know Jesus more, and they ask her to speak more about Christian religion. They think if Christian religion has made Lucy such a noble person and respects all religions, why can’t we be such dignified persons," Paaru reveals more about her friend Lucy to her parents.
"Yes, we belong to Brahmins, are degree holders, have a name, but have become paupers now, and you are a Christian. But, our caste and religion-oriented spirituality has only created division among human beings who are God’s children. God’s children are all equal before God. God is love and wherever love is, there is a God. We have learned from you, God allows the Sun’s rays fall on good and bad people, he allows rain to fall on good and evil people alike. In the name of God, we fight, and discriminate those who belong to other castes and religions. We all belongiong to different religions must live together with tolerance and justice, learn to live and let others live in peace and harmony. Your faith in God has made you a prophetic messenger of peace and harmony to our family and to all human beings. Your God experience has helped you to cross all religious boundaries and love all without any distinction. I have personally experienced this." Paaru’s mom expresses her idea about God and appreciates Lucy’s healthy religious attitude.
Lucy gets surprised at hearing that Paru’s parents are degree holders and the humility she made a judgment on her Hindu religion and how to live all people of different faiths. It’s pretty shocking for Lucy to know that they lost their wealth while drinking and have become very poor. Alcohol can ruin everything.
"Your words of wisdom, knowledge, dealings with others irrespective of any religion or caste, a conviction in your God, your life experience in a God-fearing family at your home, have challenged me, my child Lucy. You have planted a desire in my heart to build up a lovely, God-fearing family. I give you my word. I want to transform my family into a family of love and respect for each other." Paaru’s dad appreciates Lucy and shares his convictions and plans for his family.
Yes, Lucy has created a good rapport with Paaru and her parents to induce the parents to a renewed life and happiness. That’s very significant and challenging.
"Lucy, Christmas is approaching. We are already in December. I remember last year’s chance to celebrate Christmas in the town-hall. What’s your plan for this year?" Paaru reminds Lucy about Christmas.
"I have a thought of calling our teachers to my home for the celebration of Christmas this year, and it thrilled my parents about it. I don’t know if they will accept my invitation, as most of them are non christian. They may even think that if they come to my house, then they have to go to other places if anyone invites them for any celebration." Lucy expresses her doubts.
"Oh, I’m excited about it. Certainly they’ll come because our teachers often stress that we must respect all the religions and their festivals because in every religion, there is God, our Creator and Sustainer." Paaru encourages her.
In peace and with a sense of hope and confidence, Lucy returns to her home.