Transforming Faith

Submitted into Contest #89 in response to: Start your story with a character taking a leap of faith.... view prompt

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Christian Coming of Age Creative Nonfiction

Prompt 2: start your story with a character taking a leap of faith.

 Transforming Faith

"Your basic problem is that Goddess Parvathi is angry with your family and causing all these problems in your house." The priest revealed it to Ram Krishna, a staunch Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) member.

Ram had been a fanatic Hindu and very much involved in fighting against Christians and doing a lot of harm to them in many places. He had taken leadership in attacking churches and Christian prayer meetings and got many imprisoned in false cases. He was a terror to Christians. Of course, he had an education in a Christian school and for some criminal activities, he had to be expelled from the school after three warnings. He was never willing to change his criminal activities.

Later he got married, and his wife was seriously sick with abdominal cancer and spent so much money for treatment with no effect. Then his elder daughter, who was very healthy, suddenly, became sick of stomach ache, and she was frightened of cancer as her mother was suffering from. Under the influence of his RSS friends, he went to a Hindu priest for consultation. He asked Ram Krishna to feed fifty Brahmins and make a golden statue of goddess Parvathi and offer it in a temple of Parvathi. He did everything and spent a lot of money on it. For about a month it was alright, no serious problem was there.

His problems all came back, both his wife and daughter became serious once again, and he went to consult the priest once more, and he explained to him, "your problem from the goddess Parvathi is alright, but the god Hanuman is not at all happy with you and he is very rebellious of you all."

"What shall I do to make him happy? Please help me come out of this problem and save us." Ram Krishna requested the priest.

"You offer fifty kg of banana and a silver statue of the god Hanuman to a Hanuman temple."

The priest also gave him certain elements like nails, hair, and bones after uttering certain Sanskrit magical words over them. And asked him to bury those materials in the four corners of his house's primary room. This fear led him to fulfill the priest's suggestion. For about a month, there was no serious problem. Then he lost his job as a clerk in a firm because of the company's bankruptcy. He started getting frightened of the whole situation. This affected him so much. He had to mortgage his property to treat his wife and daughter. Thus, it agonized him very much, and he got frightened over all these unfortunate events going on in his family. Many started telling him he was under some curses, and they only made his situation worse. Then, a friend told him to visit a famous Poojary–a Hindu priest, an expert in black magic. Borrowing money from a certain friend, he went to that Black magician priest, and he said, "God Hanuman is alright. Now the god Siva is angry with you. So, to deliver you from that problem, make two golden statues of Siva and Parvathi and go to a temple situated on a river bank dedicated to Siva and Parvathi, and offer them there and feed fifty Brahmins. Once you would satisfy them, all your problems would be over and you could lead a happy life."

Ram Krishna then doubted these priests' suggestions. So he went to another priest on the same day and that priest told him, "There is no problem from Siva and Parvathi, but your problem is your house. Your house is facing the wrong direction. Rebuild your house, facing it, Eastward. You will be alright"

Hearing the contradictory advices of these two priests and what had happened previously, he lost his faith in God, and he started preaching there is no God. "To loot poor people, the priests have created Religions." He said to himself.

As a result, he lost faith in God, and lost any credibility for various ideas of the RSS and opposed their idea of Hindu Rashtra. He started preaching rationalism. He destroyed all the statues of so many Hindu gods and goddesses in his house convinced of the absence of God anywhere.

"These are all mere creatures, monkeys, cows, bulls, snakes, and mountains or rivers. How can these animals protect human beings when they need the help of human beings for their own survival?" He reasoned to come to his senses.

Then that happened. His younger daughter met with an accident and broke her right leg, putting him in a helpless situation. It worried him much and took her to an herbal doctor who could heal broken bones. After a thorough examination, he ground an herbal plant and applied on the broken area, and bandaged it well carefully. The broken bone was supposed to get joined well in twenty-four hours. The herbal doctor told him the name of an herbal plant that's normally found on the walls of muddy wells. He had to crush the plants, and the patient had to drink the juice of the plant, one ounce each in the morning and evening. His younger brother, who went with him to the doctor, recognized the plant growing in his well wall. So when they returned home, both of them went to get the plant to produce the juice.

It was in summer, and he found an abundance of plants in the well, even though they were a little lower than the edge of the well. So, they had to make a special careful effort to collect them. Unfortunately, while collecting them, he slipped and fell into the deep well. While going down in the well, terror struck him. Before touching the water he saw a white-clad man standing in the water in the well and Ram fell into his outstretched hands, well-protected. At that moment Ram heard a voice of someone proclaiming, "There is no salvation in anyone else, for there is no other name than the name 'Jesus' under heaven given to humankind by which we must be saved." After that voice, a strange inner joy started bubbling up from within Ram with tremendous courage and hope. After the voice, he saw only a strong white net above the water, and he was standing on the net without touching the water, and he could balance well.

His brother, standing outside the well, started crying and calling out for help. People rushed to save him, and they all knew he could never swim. But what they saw in the well stupefied them. He was standing in the water without getting drowned. They could not see anybody or any net in the well. With ropes, they tried to lift him with the help of a pulley. When he came out of the well, they all witnessed that neither his legs nor his clothes were wet. They all saw his dazzling face, and he was very peaceful. But they could not believe what he said about what happened in the well. He was in full of tears, tears of repentance over the harm he did to a Statue of Jesus when he attacked a church long back. The one who held him in the deep well with both hands, and protected him from falling into the well, looked like the statue he broke in hatred. He told them all about it, but they wouldn't accept it except his wife.

People all went away, but with full trust in the one who protected him in the deep well, he went to see his daughter whom the doctor instructed not to move for twenty-four hours.

"Papa, I can walk well, and have no pain now." She told him as he entered the house. On that same day, all of them received healing of their sicknesses. They all believed in Jesus that there was no other name given to human beings other than his name to save them. They experienced it practically and regretted their past foolish life and for believing all animals and reptiles, mountains and rivers. When all four of them gathered together and started praising and thanking Jesus for such mercy shown to them, they wept bitterly for all their harm they did to Christians in the past.

As they were relishing the spiritual joy, they all heard a voice telling them, "Attend a spiritual retreat in 'Mary Matha Retreat Center', in Calicut, Kerala.

The retreat was a turning point for all of them. Jesus called Ram Krishna through the preacher to share what happened to him and how he had such radical faith change in his life and became the owner of deep faith in God. The witnessing of his conversion of heart and mind healed many sick people over there. What followed were signs and wonders of God through Ram Krishna.

His companion RSS members attacked him one night and ransacked his house and warned him never to preach in that name Jesus. They also threatened him to kill if he ever did so once again. They broke his both legs in the attack, but he became more enthusiastic and bold to preach Jesus to all. His wife and children encouraged him to make Jesus known to all in the world. Their words became prophetic words when he started bringing crores of people to Jesus from people of different faiths all over the world.

Once, Bajrang Dal Hindu fascists attacked Ram Krishna with swords when he returned from an American preaching mission. As he came out of the Brigadier airport, another turning point took place in his life. When they approached him with raised swords to cut him into pieces there was a mysterious flame around him and an electric current passed through their swords, and they got electrocuted without any life loss. He had no injury at all from that attack but multiplied his faith, and he became more committed and was very happy to shed his blood for Jesus as Jesus shed his blood for all sinful human beings.

These men later joined him to preach that precious name they tried to prevent Ram Krishna from preaching. Now, they take that saving name on their lips always and preach with the mighty power of God. Jesus strengthened them all with so many people's conversion of hearts and minds, miracles, and signs of God's presence wherever they proclaimed the Lord. The more sufferings they faced, the more people came to Jesus and strengthened their faith in God. The inner joy never left them, showing the presence of the Holy Spirit in them. They went around as a blessing to all and the Risen Lord Jesus Christ proved what they preached through divine signs and healings.

April 14, 2021 13:00

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