We must ‘accept’ the guidance given by God’s Perfect System, whether we are familiar with the route He is taking us on or not, for He is the creator, planner, driver, and the guide, says SWAMI CHIDANAND SARASWATI
Three men sitting under a tree were talking about God. One man said, “1 don’t believe that God is perfect. In fact, there are so many things that an ordinary, reasonable man would be able to plan better than God. For example, look at the pumpkin patch where hundreds of pumpkins are growing large and round. But they are attached to tiny, thin vines that are collapsing under their weight, and hence are on the ground!”
Another man agreed and pointed to the mangoes on the trees, saying, “The small mangoes are hanging from those tall, sturdy trees! God should have put the heavy pumpkins on the tree and the small mangoes on the vine!”
The third man thought for a bit and said that perhaps God had a plan ― and that is why he did what he did. All three friends decided to rest and slowly fell into a deep, afternoon slumber under the shade of the mango trees. A strong wind rose and whipped through the trees. Branches swayed in the heavy wind, causing the ripe mangoes to fall. The sleeping men woke up, and saw that mangoes had fallen all around them.
“Our friend was right,” said one of the men. “What if pumpkins had hung from the trees and had fallen on us? We would have become pumpkin pie! It’s a good thing that the pumpkins grow close to the ground!”
Frequently in life, we doubt God’s path. We wonder, is this really the way? We become sceptical of the divine plan. We lose heart, our faith falters. God’s ways are frequently mysterious; we fail to see the full picture until it is unveiled to us.
These days many cars have GPS navigation systems that give directions on how to reach your destination. As you sit in the car, you enter your destination and throughout the journey, a pleasant voice guides you. But once you have entered the destination and before the guided instructions begin, you need to press the ‘accept’ button on the screen. Else the system will not work and you will have to find your own way.
GPS stands for ‘global positioning system’. It also stands for ‘God’s Perfect System’. He knows the way to the destination of our life. God never loses His way. If we don’t push ‘accept’ on the GPS system in the car, our journey will be filled with tension and worry.
At each intersection, we will have to gauge whether it is best to continue straight ahead or to turn left or right. We will have to stop and ask directions from passersby who may not know the roads. If we are focused, efficient, and lucky, we may reach the destination but we will likely be late and the journey will have been tense.
Alternatively, if we press ‘accept,’ we will be guided gently and correctly at every step. We will know where to turn, where to continue straight, and where to stop. Our minds will be free to contemplate God, to think pleasant and peaceful thoughts, to converse with others in the car. The journey will be peaceful, smooth, and enjoyable.
We must continue to ‘accept’ the guidance given by God’s Perfect System, whether we are familiar with the route He is taking us on or not. He is the creator, planner, driver, and the guide.
Swami Chidanand Saraswati is the President of Parmarth Niketan Ashram, Rishikesh, one of the largest interfaith spiritual institutions in India. He is co-founder/co-chairman of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA), the world’s first initiative to bring together the leaders of all the world’s faiths to enable a water-secure future.
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