Friday, September 12, 2014

Battle between good and evil

Life is a constant battle between right and wrong and between good and bad. The battle is for us not for God and therefore it not important for us to be on the side of God but for Him to be on our side. If we want to win the battle we must get God to be on our side by not “bribing’’ Him with elaborate rituals to glorify Him and boost His ego but by being simple, humble, compassionate and forgiving in our lives. As Jesus said, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ (Mathew 25:45)

Today almost everywhere injustice seems to rule. Wrong and bad seem to be winning everywhere - in our family, in our places of work, on the roads, in the country and even in religious institutions where the word of God is preached including in our churches and parishes. Those in power take control and deny justice to those who are disagree with them. In the offices they are denied promotions or punished, in the country they are falsely convicted and sent to jail and in the church they are "chased out" into the wilderness and denied their rights to sacraments.

Yes, life is a battle between good and evil, often with the righteous but with dissenting views being marginalized and punished for being right and good. It may be demoralizing for those fighting for right and justice but they need patience and strive harder to get God to be on their side by continuing to do the right thing despite the forces of evil arrayed against them. The final victory will be for the good and righteous as God will always be on the side of the good and righteous and never with the bad and wrong.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Sunday Refletions - 7.9.2014

Righting the wrongs

The Gospel reading last Sunday touched on something very relevant to us today. Jesus said, 'If your brother does something wrong, go and have it out with him alone, between your two selves.” Jesus tells us not to remain silent when others do wrong but to correct their wrongs. He continued to tell the people to persist in trying to change someone who is doing wrong doesn’t matter if he changes or not.
This we all know is easily said but the most difficult to do. Pointing out the wrongs others do, even those closest to us, is the most difficult thing to do. Doing so will put us with odds with them and create difficulties for us.
In our country sedition laws are freely used to silence the people who voice out the wrongs of those in power. They can be severely punished and their lives ruined for doing so. In our places of work those who point out the wrongs of those in positions of power will be punished by demotions or other forms of discrimination. Even in our church those voicing out the wrongs of the clergy and his close advisors are punished with denial of sacraments and other rituals.
Standing up for the right in an environment of bad today is not easy but Jesus says that is what we must do. If we really follow Jesus we will be ignored, marginalised, bad-mothed and denied our dues. We may end up isolated, lonely, sad and poor.
When we look around we see wrong and evil winning over right and good. It is very depressing to see good being punished and the bad rejoicing with their victory over the good. We try to change but nothing happens. We pray for divine intervention but again nothing happens. It looks like even God does not seem to be on our side. As we ponder on what happened to Jesus for standing for right we realise what we experience is nothing. It gives us strength and courage to soldier on fearlessly doing the right at all times.
As Christians we are asked to do what the English idiom says “To call a spade a spade”. But to extent are we able to do that in our lives today?

Gospel, Matthew 18:15-20
15 'If your brother does something wrong, go and have it out with him alone, between your two selves. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother.
16 If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you: whatever the misdemeanour, the evidence of two or three witnesses is required to sustain the charge.
17 But if he refuses to listen to these, report it to the community; and if he refuses to listen to the community, treat him like a gentile or a tax collector.
18 'In truth I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
19 'In truth I tell you once again, if two of you on earth agree to ask anything at all, it will be granted to you by my Father in heaven.
20 For where two or three meet in my name, I am there among them.'

Monday, August 04, 2014

The passing of a friend and comrade

Mr. George Lim – A personal tribute

George Lim Sin  Pak                                                                                                                                                                              28 August 1935 - 31 July 2014
The first time you came to see I was impressed with your high regards you had for me because you felt I stood for justice which was your inner desire.
Over the subsequent years I have come to know you better and established a close rapport with you. You gave me so much strength and encouragement to accomplish all that we had together in our TBC Community is such a short period. You were truly a pillar of TBC
I was inspired by your disciplined lifestyle, your willingness to work and go out of the way to help the poor and needy even at an advanced age when many would want to rest.
Your past experiences in the fight against the communists as a policeman, against corruption as anti-corruption officer, against injustice and power abuse as a law-abiding citizen are useful lesson for me and the younger generation which cannot be bought or obtained with any degree.
Your unshakable faith in God even during severe trials make me feel small when I tend to lose faith   and give up so easily. Your devotion to Our Lady and the Rosary was remarkable
I will surely miss you especially during our future charitable projects, prayer sessions, and fellowships and most importantly during our ‘thirsty nights’.
I thank you for the wonderful times I had with you which I will cherish till the end.
It is painful to think you are not there anymore, more so when you had left so suddenly without even saying goodbye
But I know you have gone to a better place where there will be greater peace and happiness in the presence of God and his angels and saints
I will continue your work in our TBC Community in which you were a loyal and tireless comrade and will continue to work and pray for your family

May your soul rest in peace