Being Steadfast and Persevering in Peace

“My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody!” Psalm 57:7

“Jallikattu” is the word that is going viral over the past few days and for the first time after India became independent a large mass of Tamilians has come together protesting to retain their cultural identity. This time the protest was initiated in a different, non-violent and persistent way marking the beginning of a revolution. Attention was diverted towards the student community and the common people instead of politicians and celebrities. The entire world looked up to this protest as an example. Taking a closer look at what made this small protest gain attention and support from neighbouring states as well as from Internationally settled Tamil population could be attributed to two things: 1) Being Steadfast and 2) Persevering in Peace. The entire crowd focussed on the deeper meaning of the issue and remained focussed on the core of the problems. In the attempt to show their disagreement, they decided to join together and voice it out in silence. Though the days that followed had few occurrences of public stunts and inconveniences, the intention of the protesters was to conduct it in a peaceful way, without disturbing anyone or getting disturbed by anyone. At this juncture, I recall the nativity play that I had scripted and directed for the tiny tots. Wanting the play to be a bit more interactive I had told the kids playing the wise men that the Star was towards the door and they can walk down the aisle amidst the audience and to take a little tour before reaching the manger scene. During the play, the first two wise men fancied the stage better and instead of walking towards the star directly got onto the stage where the manger scene was set. The third wise man, clear about his role, went walking towards the door, focussed on the star and made a tour. The audience that included a lot of friends from other faiths were laughing about the third wise man believing it was he who had made the mistake. Keeping up his focus and remaining steadfast undisturbed by the other two wise men’s mistakes made him a comedian in the play. Yet, this opened up a discussion and helped eliminate a few people’s ignorance due to their curiosity that was kindled about this third wise man’s behaviour. My dear friends in Christ, this is what happens to us most of the time when we remain steadfast seeking God and set ourselves apart: We puzzle those around us. Many times we take a different stand that does not conform to the worldly pattern making us appear as fools. Noah would have appeared a fool till the flood came when his heart was set upon God building an Ark; Joseph was mocked as a dreamer when his heart was set upon God; even we may be considered fools when we set our hearts on God. Yet, we need to persevere and in peace. We can take examples from the young protesters and the third wise man cited above who held steadfast to their cause, intensified their vigour in peace, kindled the inquisitiveness of people to learn more about the issue and earned a lot of supporters. If this can be done, how much more vigour we need to possess to revive a spiritual heritage and a moral cleansing and through our lives kindle inquisitiveness of those around to learn more about this true God upon whom our heart is set. What a joy would it be if we are rooted in Him and communicate His love through our lives! Would not that ring a beautiful melody of new believers? As we begin this month, are we able to say as the Psalmist “My heart is steadfast, O God, My heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody”

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