I know it has been a while since I have written to you.Have received both of your letters.Please forgive me for this procrastination and I have been really busy this summer as I have taken three courses and have so far completed about two of them with the top grade.How are you?How are you doing healthwise?It rends my heart into many pieces to see that our relationship is not the same as before.I do realize that this is on account of my conversion to Christianity.I am being sincerely honest with you.I have done some serious ‘soul searching’ and this is the Truth that I end up with always.I have always been in search of the True Living God, the One who created us, the One who sustains us and the One who gives a purpose and a meaning to the life we live in this mundane world.
You taught me and raised me in the best way you knew how and I am eternally grateful to you.For the love you showered upon me and I thank the Lord for that.You nurtured me in a culture in which you were brought up and bred in me the traditions you learnt and conditioned me with religious rituals and imparted to me that only an education would add dignity and honor to one’s life.I think you are the most wonderful people in my life and I love you guys.For the sacrifices you made to accommodate happiness and joy in my life.
In my pursuit of the Truth for the living God, I did become ritualistic and did worship idols in the temple out of fear and reverence.Still there existed an emptiness in my life as I sought to fulfill my heart’s desire by joining the Yogoda Satsanga Society with Sunil so that there would be joy, hope and peace.Trying to seek God through a teacher who was dead way before I came to be in this world did not certainly fit the bill.I tried transcendental meditation coupled with yogic exercises and it only increased my impoverished (heart) existence to being a void.I could see flashes of light but nothing really happened to fulfill that emptiness in my life.I certainly recognize that one needs to be blessed with material things of this world (like a good house, car, job etc.,) but when they become a goal (god) in themselves, you are back to square one, once you achieve them.In this capitalistic and materialistic world even this increases your misery, as guilt permeates your conscience (soul) when certain things are not accomplished in an upright manner.When everything else failed, I started going to church not to become a Christian, even though at that point of time I certainly was against their narrow minded view of things.Church to me was just another place to seek and worship God whom I wanted to know.It did not certainly bind me in any way or was any restrictions imposed upon me.As long as decorum was maintained, it was just like a temple, a place for meditation upon God.The people in the church and especially in my Sunday School class started to witness to me their faith in Jesus Christ.
In the beginning, I just listened to what they had to say, but my mind was certainly made up to stand firm to my beliefs.As time progressed, I became very defensive and virtually was cynical about their conservative view of God.I shared with them that there existed a world far superior with people of different religions and cultures.As I adhered and persevered with the beliefs I had, they asked me to share my beliefs and pointed out inconsistencies.I pointed out as long as I did good works and did not hurt anyone intentionally and as long as I was happy, for a loving God would want me to be happy, I would be fine.They shared with me that God wanted me to be more than happy and that He wanted me to be His child and to be in His presence forever.This troubled me since in Hinduism, a person’s life is governed by one’s karma.
Since there is (virtually) no concept of sin in our Hindu beliefs, a person seeking forgiveness or even atonement is a far cry for we do not see ourselves as sinners before a Holy God.For when you sin, you incur the wrath of God and that is not a pretty place for one to be in.Having lived in such a philosophy for over 25 years, it becomes scary when one is confronted with sin in one’s life.This is what the Bible proclaimed and it was their stance.For when I was presented with a Bible since I had no intention of buying one, I did not start reading it since I did not feel a need for it.
I started praying earnestly and always (mouthed) said the same words “God if You exist, if you are real, reveal Yourself to me” for my faith always rested on a God who was Supreme.I felt a nudge in my heart to start reading the Bible.Instead of dismissing it, I picked up the Bible and started to read from the beginning.It was interesting since it was like a well written story and probably read about 300 pages before I gave it up since I was burdened with my studies.When summer approached I was without funds, had no means of support and was left in the lurch to fend for myself.
I started diligently to read and understand the Bible in a totally new light as God started to reveal Himself to me.Even as I read it in part but on a continual basis, I came to grips with my Hindu beliefs.I asked God “How could this be?If what You are saying in the Bible is true, then why did I live a lie all these years?”I never got an answer as I struggled with my beliefs over the next few months.This was not just a fight with my mind-set beliefs and it became a quest for survival.The truths I began to decipher were shattering and were in conflict with what I had believed.I was hardpressed not knowing whether I was in the right path or not.I could not comprehend the severity of the situation I was in.Was what I had trusted for years not true?If so, why?How can over 750 million (Hindu) people in India alone be in error, strayed away from God’s Truth?No answers were forthcoming!But the Gracious Lord opened my heart to show me His Truth as He made me understand that I have sinned against Him and Him only.
The presence of sin in a human’s life does not (necessarily) make one evil.People can still be good (morally) and yet sin against God.Sin is being disobedient to God and hence one needs to seek His forgiveness.Emancipation from sin is only through His forgiveness.Being Just, God is justified to send each one of us to hell, forever banished from His Presence.It just takes ‘1’ sin for one to be a sinner.But God who is so full of love does not want us to perish but wants us to fellowship with Him.In aspiring to know God and to know Him personally, there needs to exists a desire.For those who loved God, He did not leave them in the lurch.
One needs to understand that we are separated from God because of sin in our lives.And sin needs to be punished by God, if He is a just God. The wages of sin is death, the Bible says.The worst part being “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”This ofcourse was the most difficult aspect for me to hold on to.The word ‘All’ seemed a ‘misnomer’ and yet is the truth since I look back at the life I have lived, I have been disobedient not only to you but to Him and thus sinned against the Holy God.Remember it just takes one sin for a human to be a sinner.Another fact that was revealed was ‘every human is made in the likeness of God.’This does not mean that God looks like a human being but we are created morally and spiritually in His image, for God is Spirit.We were created for His glory, for fellowship with Him.By sinning, we have fallen out of that fellowship.
Then as these issues began to press on me, I wondered why not God, Who is merciful, Who loves us so much just say ‘you are forgiven’ and restore that fellowship.As I reflect on His Word, if He just forgave us our sins by being merciful, He would not be just. For God to be just as well as merciful, someone had to pay the price.Since none was found worthy, God had to look within Himself, to send forth the Lamb who would take upon Himself the sins of the world and offered as a Sacrifice so as to penalize the sinfulness of mankind.That Lamb is Jesus Christ.
Jesus born of a virgin, Mary, by the power of the Holy Spirit came to be and He committed no sin for He is (both) God as well as Man.He is the Son of God who willingly came forward and became sin for us.He paid the ultimate price of death - which was the wages of sin and the Ultimate Sacrifice on the cross at Calvary for the sins of the world.He did this to enable those who believed ‘ON’ His Name to have eternal life and thereby restore that fellowship.Jesus died on the cross, Crucified, abandoned and forsaken by God the Father, for God could not look upon sin.Jesus was buried and God raised Him on the third day to establish His everlasting victory over death.He opened the doors for all those who believed, sought His forgiveness and He gave them the right to become the children of the living God.Those who accept Jesus into their hearts and lives as Lord, Master, Savior and Redeemer, they were given the gift of the Holy Spirit and eternal salvation of God is bestowed upon them.
I cannot comprehend why God loves me so much as He loves each and every one of us, but I’m glad He does.I accept it by faith for even faith is given to me to believe in Him.As the Lord opened my heart and poured His Love and Faith into it, I went on my knees before the Awesome God and sought His forgiveness for my sins.I acknowledged that I was a sinner and asked Jesus to cleanse me from all unrighteousness, to touch me, to kill me and to raise me to a new life in Him, and to come into my heart and be my Lord, Savior and King.He has blessed me with His Holy Spirit from that day on to lead a life ( a new creation) in obedience to Him as He sets Himself as an example.The emptiness in my life finallywas eradicated as Jesus Christ reigns as Lord and Master in my heart.I have never known such joy and such peace.He has filled me with a desire to love others and tell others about His love and Sacrifice for them.He has given me the much needed meaning and purpose in life and finally my faith has found a resting place in the Sovereign Lord of the universe.
Even as I wrestled with the consequences of my decision, either I had to accept it or reject it for you mean so much to me.This decision was a great cost not knowing if you would still accept me just as I am, just as the Lord Jesus accepted me.I do realize the cost that I have paid fades before the cost that God had to pay through His Only Son Jesus Christ, Who is at the right hand of the Father, for my sins and for the sins of the world.It is not a question of one displeasing the other but accepting the Truth as is.I did not commit myself to this decision so that I could fit into this society and culture, for I see salvation under no other name.The Lord recognizes that one cannot work one’s way into salvation and hence provided the way for those who believed on Him, through Jesus Christ, His Son.
You might be wondering as to why I went to such great length to explain and interpret what I have done.Because it is the Truth and every individual is responsible for their own actions, decisions etc.I want you to know that I love you and it originates from the eternal God who Himself is all love and wants me to tell you.If I did not firmly believe in it, I would not have told you that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Born of the Spirit, I submit myself each day in obedience to His will.The question of why (are they) do some religions exist, if Jesus is the Only Way to the Father, needs to be addressed.Can idols made by men speak?Can they bless?Can they redeem?The devil (Satan) has played on each individual mind and has torn us apart from God’s Truth and to live a lie.There is more at stake than we see and encounter in our lives.The spiritual realm in which the dark, deceitful , slothful creatures exist play havoc on the human mind and since we tend to reason with our mind so often that we give in.Please do understand that I am not trying to reason out my conversion or even win the case by argument.I want you to ask these pertinent questions yourselves and answer them truthfully.The Lord looks at the heart of each created being.Being good does not take us anywhere before God Almighty for the sin in us makes us naked and shameful, for the darkness in our hearts is contrasted against the glory of God.Hence each individual needs to make a choice - for God or against God.If God is one, why do we have to worship tens and hundreds of gods in our lives to live a greedy life?Are we worshipping God because He is God or are we worshipping Him so that our ‘wants’ will be met?
I believe only God can answer these questions and a number of others that you would have.He says in His Word “Ask and you will be given; Seek and you shall find; Knock and the door shall be opened to you.”It is my earnest prayer and my heart’s desire that you would read the Bible atleast once for His’ sake who loves you so much.“So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of mouth; It shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it”is the promise that God gives in His eternal Word.Open your hearts to the Lord and see what the Lord has in store for you.No matter what you want to do with the Truth or whatever you may choose, my love for you is not going to diminish in anyway.
In September of 1993, I received God’s call to the ministry of the Gospel (Good News).I have been obedient and applied to Erskine Theological Seminary for the Master of Divinity program.At that point of time, neither did I have the resources for the tuition fees nor transportation not boarding/lodging.I was accepted into the program within 15 days and the Gracious Lord gave (made available) me a tuition waiver for the program and through the pastor’s wife Mrs. John Compton Jr., I received a car for transportation and through Ruth and Ted Canupp, boarding and lodging at no cost.This is just one instance of what the Good Lord is doing in my life.I started the program at the Seminary in January 1994 and have so far completed 21 hours towards a 90 hour program for the Master of Divinity program.The Lord has blessed me with patience and endurance as He has given me much wisdom to receive His Truth.The point of the matter being I am serious about what I am trying to tell you honestly.If I am persevering to become a minister of the Gospel by the Grace of God who sustains my very breath, I am not voicing a lie to you.
I have been praying for God’s intervention in your lives, that you may see His Truth in the light of His grace, because I would like you to be where I am with the Lord Jesus Christ.It may seem that I am pointing fingers at you, however, it is not my intention to do so, for I want you to confront God’s Truth in your lives and set yourselves apart from Satan’s lie.No matter what is said, I cannot elucidate to you on every single aspect of my faith, since some of it has to be accepted in faith trusting the everlasting and eternal God for deliverance, for I know in part and prophesy in part, but when perfection (Lord Jesus Christ in all His glory) comes, I (we) shall know fully.
You might wonder ‘How is this pertinent to me?’Jesus might have done what He wanted to do and How does this fit into my scheme of things and how do the consequences of the decision I make affect me?First of all, God who created us exists, for we have not come into this world accidentally.Sin exists no matter how much we want to deny it.The presence of sin means absence of God in an individual.Jesus was the atonement of our sins for God loves us so intensely that we cannot even fathom the length, breadth or width of His love.He has given each individual either to accept His plan of salvation through Jesus Christ, His Son, or reject it.The consequences of the choice you make - 1. For God (Trusting Jesus Christ as Lord, Savior & Master) - gift of eternal salvation, forever present in His kingdom (not earthly) to come and the gift of the Holy Spirit to guide our lives in Him.No fear of physical death since Christ has already overcome the world;2. Against God (Rejecting the work of the Holy Spirit in one’s life) - forever banished from the presence of God, (fate of Satan) and to burn in hell forever.Pursuit after earthly things which satisfy for a while and become redundant; life without joy and without peace of God and a life of misery with emptiness overwhelming one without hope for the future.
These words seem harsh but it is the Truth.You may not get the complete picture in one reading of this letter for it has been written over a period of days led by the Spirit of God.I encourage you to read this letter two or three timesand also to read the Bible for God offers His solution to man’s inherent sinfulness in a pristine and succinct manner.There is a lot more to heaven and hell than I have illustrated.
Since God has saved His people by grace, He will come again in all His glory (in the fullness of time), with all His angels to redeem His children from a wicked and perverse world to a sinless heaven.Even as I wait for the Lord Jesus Christ to come back to receive His children unto Himself, I hope you too would make a commitment to Him, before He comes.The choices you make determines the life you lead.Moreover these choices have eternal consequences.
You might then ask me, why it took me so long to address you regarding this matter.One reason and probably the only one being unable to express my thoughts and beliefs, since I had trusted myself to doing it.Once I let God to work and express Himself through me, there was clarity of thought as I sought His eternal wisdom.It is my heart’s desire that you will use this is as a stepping stone (a foundation) in your pursuit to seeking God’s Truth in your lives.For those who seek Him, will find Him unfailingly.May the Blessed Lord of joy, peace and comfort endow you with His glorious riches in Jesus Christ as you confront and accept His everlasting love and that there may be peace between you and the One who created you.No matter what you decide or which way you choose to go, I love you more than ever, from the depths of my heart and I thank the Lord for you.If there are any questions that you need an answer to, I pray you would confide in me and the Lord will give the directions you need to take.
How are Navneeta and Ganesh?How is my niece?How is Satish?Do let them know that I still love them and May God pour His choicest blessings upon you.Convey my regards to friends and relatives and I love you both.