The Promise to the Lord
Why, O soul, why the delay?
Have you forgotten the promise
You made to your Beloved on that special day?
He awaits and longs to be with you –
But, alas, you do not hear His loving voice.
Why, O soul, why do you still waste this day?
It had been a hectic and chaotic few months. And, finally, after what seemed like years on end, we were seated in the presence of the living Master, away from the world, away from the chaos. Although hundreds of thousands were seated under the same roof, the Master gave each of us the individual attention we craved for. A soothing peacefulness filled our inner being, and the joy we felt was beyond expression. Like a lost child finally reunited in the loving arms of his parents, we asked for nothing more except for time to stand still and for the moment to never end. No thoughts existed; all attachments and possessions were forgotten – being with the Master was all that mattered.
However, the silence in the heart was soon broken by a voice from within: “Here you are in the presence of your Master who is always giving you so much, why do you keep running after the world, when you can have his infinite love within?” And then came the most painful question: “Have you lived up to that promise you once made to him?” Gazing at the Master, feelings of guilt and shame flowed freely for there were no real answers – just excuses.
And yet, the Master responded with the most loving smile as though to say, “It’s still not too late. I’m still here for you – waiting.”
The Master continues to shower his love and grace upon us, even when we indulge ourselves in the world. He encourages and inspires us, especially when we go astray. We do so much for our family members, we spend nights awake when they are sick, but for the one who is prepared to give us everything, for the one who is going to be with us even after we die, we fall short.
Once a spiritual teacher was walking with his disciples and saw a little girl hiding in the corner weeping. “Why are you crying little one?” asked the teacher. She replied tearfully, “I was playing hide-and-seek with my friends, but they didn’t come to look for me!” The teacher sighed and said to his disciples, “In the answer and the tears of that little girl, I hear the sad voice of the Lord, ‘I, God, have hidden myself too, as it were, but no one comes to look for me.’”
He longs for us to turn towards him and his patience is never exhausted even as we cling to the world. We know the material world and our attachments are always the cause of our own pain and suffering, but if we would learn to let go and open up our hearts to receive his love, we would experience his abiding presence, for he longs to give us his all.
Christ has said, “I lay down my life for the sheep.” Maharaj Charan Singh explains this quote so beautifully in the book Light on Saint John, and reveals what the Master is willing to do for us:
I am willing to sacrifice anything to save the souls allotted to my care, because my Father wants not a single soul to be lost. I must bring every marked soul back to Him. This is my work. For this He has sent me to your level. I am prepared even to give my life to save them.
Having a Master in our lives is having everything we will ever need. He has made a promise that he will take us back to our true home – and this promise he will fulfil. His love for us is eternal and nothing in this world can ever take him away from us. However difficult life may be, regardless of how often the world pierces our heart, we know that around every corner, we have the light of the Master’s love, supporting and guiding us throughout our journey.
The Master deserves much more from us. Time is slipping away from our hands, and who knows what tomorrow will bring: Will we be healthy? Will we have a sound mind? Will we even be alive? While we have these precious breaths, if we expend our energy in our spiritual practice, we will build our treasure within – which at the end of the day is all that is important.
We have said enough in words – what is important is how we use the present moment and commit ourselves through our actions – our sincere meditation is our true commitment to the promise we once made to him. That is all he asks from us. Every moment that we meditate brings us closer to him, and he longs for that day when we become one with him.
Why must we give ourselves fully to God? Because God has given Himself to us. If God who owes nothing to us is ready to impart to us no less than Himself, shall we answer with just a fraction of ourselves? To give ourselves fully to God is a means of receiving God Himself. I for God and God for me. I live for God and give up my own self, and in this way induce God to live for me.
Mother Teresa, Come Be My Light