Monday, April 5, 2010

If you love me keep my commandments

There was once a woman who had two children, Cain and Abel. She loved them so much and would do anything for them. Every morning before going to work she would drop them off at school which was not too far from their home. As she was leaving, the kids would hug her and tell her how much they loved her. She would promise to buy something for them when coming back from work. Then she would ask them to be of good behaviour while she was away.  She would also remind them of what they should and should not do. She had done this so many times the kids had a list of dos and don’ts in their memory. The list looked like this.
•    Leave for home as soon as school closes
•    Do not talk to strangers while returning home from school
•    Change from your school clothes and have a bath as soon as you get home
•    Take your dinner from the microwave oven and eat.
•    Clear the table and put your plates in the kitchen sink
•    Stay indoors! Do not go outside to play. Watch television or play video games instead.
•    Take your siesta by 4pm. I’ll be home by 5pm.

The mother would then head off to work and the children would remain in school. As soon as school closed the kids would head for home.

Now, Abel was always able to do his mothers wish. He only felt happy when what he was doing was pleasing to his mother. He found it very easy to avoid talking to strangers; he not only cleared the table after eating, but would also wash the plates; he also would remain indoors, watch TV and take his siesta at the proper time.
Cain on the other hand, could not care less about what his mother wanted. He could not understand why he should not talk to strangers; he did not see why he should have a bath as soon as he got home from school; he did not think he would be strong enough to clear the table after a full day at school; he did not see anything wrong in playing outside for just a little while instead of watching television or playing those silly video games. And so he did whatever he liked; besides, he reasoned, his mother loved him so much, she would always forgive him for his bad behaviour.

Around 5pm the children’s mother would return home. As usual she would come with things she bought for the kids. They would run to her, hug her and kiss her. Again they would tell her they loved her and as usual she would tell them she loved them too.

But did they? Who really loved her? Was it Cain who did not really care about what pleased his mother? Or was it Abel whose only wish was to do what made his mother happy?

Why was it so easy for Abel to adhere to his mother’s instructions? Was there something inside him that made it easy for him to follow the mother’s instructions?  Something strong enough to help him overcome a natural reluctance to do work, to the extent that he would even enjoy washing plates when he really didn’t have to!  Could it be love? It is said that when we do love someone, we feel the pains and joys of that person and we try to do only what pleases that person. Was Abel's feeling for his mother not love? True love!

Now this woman happens to have hidden cameras in and around the house. And these cameras are linked to her mobile phone. So that even when far away, she could still see them.  She would watch as one child engages in only those things that are pleasing to her while the other does only what pleases himself.

But she says nothing about what she sees. The list she made is really not for her own benefit, but for the benefit of the children. It is meant to protect them from danger and to make them stronger and better human beings.

Because she loves them, she gave them a list of dos and don’ts which if followed would be a blessing to them. If they truly love her as they claim, they would endeavor to do only those things which are pleasing to her; things which are in harmony with her will, as expressed in her list and as a consequence of which they would receive blessing.

The blessings are not the gifts received from their mother every now and then when she comes back from school. No!
The blessings are not so obvious. Rather they are the transformations that take place gradually in Abel as he grows from a kid into a young man. A young man that has control over himself; one that is diligent and disciplined; one who knows the value of doing the right thing at the right time; and who can hold his head up high anywhere, anytime!

Cain on the other hand cannot get these blessings. He has locked himself away from them and unless he changes for the better, he would eventually grow up into a self centered, lazy and unruly young man; a man with no respect for time.

We are like Cain and Abel and we have been given a list…the Ten Commandments. Through the endeavour to live in accordance with the Will of God as expressed in the Commandments, we would gradually be transformed into such human beings as are worthy to enter the kingdom of Heaven; human beings that are children of God; children who do the bidden of their father.

But do not be deceived, you cannot eat your cake and have it. You cannot live sinful lives and expect to make it to Heaven simply because you call yourselves children of God. Singing praises to God and telling Him you love Him are equally immaterial if at the same time you do not endeavour to do His Will. What therefore is important, are your activities…what you think, what you say and what you do. These activities show whom you serve and hence where you would be headed when you leave the earth. If good i.e. if in harmony with the Will of God, then you serve God and would thus be heading to His Kingdom when you leave here. But if bad,i.e. if in harmony with the will of the darkness, you can only have one master; Satan! Hence you would be heading in his direction when you leave here. The choice of the direction we face at any point in time and our ultimate destination lies with us.

God loves us. That is why He gave us the Ten Commandments; that is also why He sent prophet after prophet to help guide us along our earthly path and finally, that is why He sent His Son Jesus, to give us first hand, the message of Truth, a message that admonishes us continuously to keep the Will of His Father who sent Him.

Now just as we have the “Ten Commandments of God”, there also are the commandments of Satan. Where do you stand? Whose commandments do you keep? Do you really love God, or do you just claim to do so.

The Almighty God has this message;
     if you love me, keep my Commandments.

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