I think it’s in those moments we are sad, alone, exhausted and at the end of our rope that are our defining moments. I’ve written in the past about getting to a point at which I felt really faraway from God. I was so angry that I couldn’t look past my anger to feel the love. Through that process I eventually found my faith again and strengthened it so that it would be the one thing that is always with me.
It’s been a hard couple of weeks for me and I am drawing from that strong faith. In both my personal life and my job I have witnessed the sick and dying, and sometimes people don’t make it. It has left me with sadness and grief. I’m also at an age where a lot of my friends just don’t have the skills to be able to listen/respond to grief, illness, and loss because they don’t have the experiences to be able to relate, and so I’m also isolated.
“Kabeer, nothing is mine within myself. Whatever there is, is Yours, O Lord.
If I surrender to You what is already Yours, what does it cost me?” Ang 1375 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji)
“Other than You, Lord, nothing is mine.” (Ang 112 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji)
The above lines of Gurbani are holding me together. They remind me that even when I feel I have lost everything, I have lost nothing. Nothing belongs to me. No one belongs to me. It has given me a sense of deep gratitude. No matter what circumstances I am in, I will always have God. I am grateful for each gift He has given me, including the fact that I am alive today, I have a home and food to eat, and I am given the opportunity to serve Him everyday. When people leave us, we are sad because we want more time. That isn’t in our hands. All we can do is appreciate the gift of having them in our lives, no matter how long or short. Even if in one moment we were a part of their lives, God gave us that. I’m realizing that it really doesn’t matter what other people say, or how they treat me. The only thing that matters is how I treat other people. I need to use my time in my life to remind people that I care, that I love them, and to spread that love in every single way possible. We can’t afford to spend our lives holding back our love. I can spread that love in the sewa that I do each day. I can be thankful for all the gifts of meeting all the people that have been a part of my life, and the role they played in shaping me. I can be thankful for the opportunity to care for the sick and dying. To spend the last moments with them, saying prayers and thinking of Waheguru.
True love for God is we love Him in every circumstance. Guru Gobind Singh Ji composed this shabad in the Macchivara forest after his four sons were martyred:
“Tell the condition of the believers to my Beloved friend. [Tell Him that] Without You, using bed sheets is like a sickness and like living as being wrapped by the snakes. The pitcher is a thorn and the glass is a dagger which are like tolerating being butchered. Death bed with my Beloved is better than body burning [living with vice] without Him”