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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Chp 96. "AGAPE" Gospel Rehab Camp

“Hnehna chu Lalpa ta a ni.”

Translation: Through God, anything can be conquered.

When I landed back here in Mizoram two weeks ago, my parents wanted me to go to a Camp (spiritual rehab). I always used to consider myself to be a “good enough” Christian: someone who goes to Church on Sundays, sleeps during the Sermon most of the time but concentrates seriously during prayers, breaking many of the laws inscribed in the Holy Bible but at the same time never blaspheming the Word of God, proud to tell my other non-Christian friends about my faith but at the end of the day getting totally wasted together over a bottle of rum or a joint of cigga-wee and trying to convince myself that God understands what my flesh wants so He won’t note this down on His Book.

Just going through some of my past few posts on my blog will echo what I have stated above. Ah the folly of ignorance! How can anyone call themselves a Christian when they choose to follow/practice only what they desire and knowingly ignore the rest?
1 Samuel 15
1Samuel said to Saul, “I am the one the Lord sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the Lord”.
3 “Now go attack the Amalekites and totally destroy everything that belongs to them. Do not spare anyone”.
7Then Saul attacked the Amalekites all the way from Havilah to Shur, to the east of Eygpt.
9But Saul and the army spared king Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and the lambs – everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.
10Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel: 11 “I am grieved that I have made Saul king because he has turned away from me and has not carried out my instructions.”
13When Samuel reached him, Saul said, “The Lord bless you! I have carried out the Lord’s instructions.”
14But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?”
Saul thought he obeyed the Lord’s command when infact all he did was obey a part of it. That would be the same as disobeying His command. Suppose you were told to peel four baskets of potatoes, and you end up peeling only two; Eventually it means you did not peel four baskets of potatoes, regardless of whether you peeled two or three baskets. Many of us are like that: We think we are all leading the life of a good Christian when we do only a part of what we’re actually supposed to do.

Eventually in the end, David took over the throne of Israel from Saul.
1 Chronicles 10 13Saul died because he was unfaithful to the Lord; he did not keep the word of the Lord and even consulted a medium for guidance, 14and did not inquire of the Lord. So the Lord put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David son of Jesse.
I underwent 5 days of camping at “AGAPE”, Durtlang, under Evangelist Zairemmawia and his group of amazing counselors last week. At first I was a bit hesitant to go to the Camp, because a part of me didn’t want to change. Ofcourse rehab does not necessarily mean you have to change if you don’t want to, but I was thinking more in the lines of “what if I change?” I was afraid to let go of my current lifestyle. I prefer materialism to spiritualism. I like reading and taking part in various discussions because of a strange thirst for knowledge and have an open view/opinion on almost anything from Islam to creationism to racial issues to relationships. I was wondering how some of my so-claimed “unbiased opinions” and “rational thinking” would be affected if I suddenly change. I was also afraid I might turn into a zealot, or worse: one of those people who are more devoted than you are and hence throw around their “Holier than thou” attitude around you. I really hated those people.

How am I feeling right now? Honestly speaking, I’ve never felt this relieved in my entire life. Now I know why so many of my friends who’ve been to camp and who know me well pester me incessantly to go to the camp. When we experience something so great, we like to share it with our loved and dear ones. During my party days, whenever I check out a new discotheque and it turned out to be amazing, I always text message all my closest friends to make sure they go to that place too. In a way, that feeling is similar to this, except that the former comes genuinely from inside while the latter lasts only till the next morning, unless it is accompanied by a head throbbing hangover.

Well so am I a "born-again"? No, but my idea of what a “born again” feels like was completely misguided. Born again does not mean all immoral desires and temptations from Satan will suddenly disappear just like that. All those temptations will ofcourse still be there; but you’ll now have more Power to resist it. Having the desire to revert to your old self is only a way of reminding you that you are only human, just like the rest of us. Born again does not necessarily mean you’ll suddenly start dancing wildly in Churches consumed by the Holy Spirit and start talking in languages nobody on Earth understands. It also does not mean you can suddenly start healing the sick with your hand and prayers, or quit your studies or job to become a missionary in a Country where Christians are persecuted.

Born again is about seeing the light that you’ve been seeing all your life, but this time without using any filters or lenses. Born again is about being face to face with God without the surrounding environment bothering you, and not about wondering what clothes to wear to Church or whether your friends will ridicule you for standing up and clapping your hands when people are singing the hymns. Born again is about realizing how short the Church sermon suddenly seemed and wishing it could go on for atleast another extra hour or two.

Born again is about expressing your true passion during prayers by standing up, raising your hand and shouting out praises to Him rather than asking stupid questions like “whether we can lie down and pray before we go to sleep as long as the urges came from within”. If such urges genuinely came from within, you will definitely not be lying down and praying. Imagine you just won the lottery or India beat Brazil in the Football World Cup Finals: would you casually lie down and nonchalantly remark “yay”?

There are so many other things I want to say but will astutely refrain from talking about it now due to space constraint. Right now, I’ve never felt this much joy and completeness within me in my entire life. During my peniel, I asked the good Lord to give me the wisdom and sapience to write about Him and make me His instrument. Sure this means I will be losing a lot of my regular visitors to my blog, but if my writings can bring Home even one lost sheep, that is far more worthy than leading a thousand sheep away from Home.

This new era will also mean a lot of people will be challenging what I’m saying by quoting different verses from the Bible / scientific propositions and postulates / our Mizo culture and tradition / rationality / different Christian beliefs etc. Let me put it down straight: I may not have the answer you require; you’ll just have to experience what I’m experiencing in order to find all your answers.

Halleluiah. Hnehna chu Lalpa ta a ni.

27 comments:

illusionaire said...

I need to change the layout and some photographs on my blog... Please give me some time to do that.

Love and Prayers.

benjamin said...

Congrats again. I announced it here.
http://misual.com/2006/12/13/through-god-anything-can-be-conquered/

I am sure God would use your writing skills for his Glory. Just do everything with God.

Rema said...

Hey Sandman,

It's good to hear of your experience and the new birth. Welcome to His Kingdom. Hnehna chu Lalpa ta a ni. "Victory is the Lord's." Amen

Rema said...

Hey Sandman,

It's good to hear of your experience and the new birth. Welcome to His Kingdom. Hnehna chu Lalpa ta a ni. "Victory is the Lord's." Amen

Jason said...

Kima,

You are not the only one going through what you are feeling!!

When i was a new Christian, Paul's letters spoke my heart. He descibed exactly what i was going through and the aspirations and dreams of mine. Its the same for all Christians, because we are one in Him. I can identify with everything you say, dude!! I may not have all the answers, but i know this is real.

You wont lose me as your reader. God is real and He touches everyone. My guess is you wont lose a lot of your readers as well. They may go away for a while but will come back when they see the truth unfolding.

Run the race Kima!

Sundancer said...

Kim, I post chu ngaihtuah va ti tam ve. Rilru ah lo lut zuai zuai a mahse min tih 'uncomfortable' vang a ngaihtuah loh luih ang chi hi.
A nawm hmel bik, I awhawm bik khawp mai. Min lo trawngtrai pui ve rawh.Ka lawmpui lutuk che nia!

illusionaire said...

@ Ben: Thanx for publishing it there bro, and I hope God would give me the skills too.

@ Rema: Dear Rema, I wouldnt exactly say I am in His Kingdom yet but rather on my way there, with the intention never to stray from that path again. Do pray for me too. I hope everything is well there in China.

@ Jason: Dear Jason, touche! It's amazing how all the answers we seek are all there in the Book, and to think I used to read all that for the past so many years without even realizing it could change me. Thanx a lot for your compliments. Hope you run by my side on that race.

@ sundancer: Dear Jerusha, ka tawngtai pui reng che alawm. i thil min hrilh thin te pawh ka la hre reng a, Pathian hnenah i buaina zawng zawng ti bo tur in ka dil reng. Peniel lai a darkar 4 tawngtai chuan tumah kan hmaih loh reng reng :-) Pathian chu fakin awm rawh se. Mahni tawp a inthlak te pawh a har a, chuvangin alawm pathian hmanrua te kan missionary/evangalist/couselors te hmahruaina kan mamawh. Mahni tawp a han inthlak/inhrechhuak/piangthar thut chu an vang hle ang. Pathianin tanpui nan che mihring a rawn thawn ang, a fapa a rawn thawn tawh ang bawk khan.

rebykah said...

kima,
all the best for ur cuming future!!!may god bless u and keep using u as his instrument......krista chanchintha puangdarh zel turin ka duhsakna sang ber ka hlan a che

virgochhas said...

u wer wondering wat will happen...

u tole us to wat to do if u cum back 'changed'...

u haf changed but it is such a wonderful change...God bless you honey...

this is so unfair...i was da one who wanted to be the born again Christian...i want wat u haf...i want it too

:)

illusionaire said...

@ Rebykah: Thankyou. May God bless you too. Got your mail. Hope you had fun in Goa. I'll reply asap, unlike you :-)

@ virgo: You can have it if you really want it dear Rami. It's not any magic or illusion. It's not even a miracle. Pu Zaia sermon script ka rawn thawn ang che, a sawi tha thei lutuk. An thlalak ho pawh ka tar tawh hi.

benjamin said...

I hope God would give me the skills too.

- The Bible says "Ask and it shall given unto you; Seek and you shall find it."

Think back, if you hadn't dropped out of IIM, this might not have happened to you.

Just like man shall not live by bread alone, man shall not glorify by preaching and singing alone.

There's a notion among some of us, especially Mizo Christians that serving the Lord goes by preaching and singing alone or in other words the de facto way of glorying him.

Take me for example,I never sing in the Church. I kind of sometimes feel quilty not singing while everying does in the Church. But then deep down my heart I don't want to singing (with my untamed and horrible voice) just because others around are singing.

Almost Unreal said...

Kima, I am so happy for you.

Please do pray for me. I find it hard to let go of some of the worldly things I am hoding on to.

Oi, ka thlarau tui hi a hal..a hrehom ka nun hi a khoro lutuk a...i dont pray, i dont read Bible except the verses that I received daily from Arca..which I sometime forgot. Ka nun hian Pahtian a mamoh lutuk a....ka khoro..

Do pray for me...and let the flame burn forever. God bless

Jinx said...

Many blessings on your new journey! I've been praying for you the moment I read about your decision to enter Gospel camp in your post in misual :)

I felt that you've been searching for quite sometime now...since the 'tawngtai position' post :)

Amah zawngtu diktak te chu Pathianin a ti thlawn ngailo...

I trust that God has a wonderful purpose for giving you the talent to write. Imagine that your previous blogs were to mould you for his divine purpose....so that you can change the lives of many others from this 'new era' blog. Cheers!!!

illusionaire said...

@ Ben: Thats exactly what my mom said too. Had I done well and graduated, I would be somewhere pushing a 12/5 job with good pay package, hectic office hours and no time for self-realization. As the saying goes, everything happens for the greater good. Hehe you should see me in Church. I don't know any of the songs :-) I tried singing for the first two minutes, and later gave up and resorted to clapping my hands and humming. Trust me, it felt just as good.

@ almost unreal: Biteii, i chhiar hman loh pawn, Sam tal kha chhiar rawh, a bik takin sam 121 kha. "I look to the mountains, where will my help come from? My help will come from the Lord..." tih kha. Chuanin hun i neih vakloh pawn, "Our daily bread" kha chhiar tum rawh. It is very short, one page per day, just a couple of lines. Trust me, it is a very good book.

@ Jinx: Thanx Jinx. Zawnglai kha chuan rilru chu a buai ve hman khawp mai. Thil kimlohna hi ka nei tlat a, eng anga rui/party/lerh mah i la, a hreawm thei lutuk. A mak tak tak, Pathian kan han thleng chiah hi chu, engkim zawng zawng kimlohna hi a lo kim vek mai a ni. Min lo tawngtai sak te chu a lawmawm khawp mai. Kei pawn ka theihnghilh lo ang che ka tawngtai naah. God bless.

benjamin said...

A little break please. Can we still crack gay jokes :-)

Yes, another topic you can write.

Jason said...

BTW, this is offtopic - is there a way a Goan can learn Mizo?
I cant read half of whats going on..
Poor me..

Anonymous said...

Interesting I must say! How do these decisive experiences figure with your ideas on 'chinky'? Do they change and if so, how? My point is that much of what we say and have as part of our attitudes and practices are engendered by 'Ah' moments...moments that grip our innermost beings and shake up our perceptions and expressions. How does this new 'Ah!' moment inform the other such 'Ah' expressions...Id love to hear. I guess that would be a good way to integrate your latest 'Ah' moment into a lifestyle so that it deepens and matures into concreteness without fizzling out? et tu!!

Anonymous said...

I pianthar avanga i blog viewers an tam phah ka ring sawt keichu

Allen said...

Et tu Kima!!

You're getting old man...

illusionaire said...

@ Ben: No comments as of now :-P

@ Jason: lolz. Sorry about the change in lang, but most of my Mizo friends who comment on my blog usually do it in english, except for this particular post. I guess when it comes to Christianity, there are certain words and phrases that seem to sound more deeper and heavier in Mizo than when translated literally into english. Plz don't mind.

@ anonymous 1: Just the other day I was thinking about the same thing. It's funny, but suddenly, all this feeling about being abused racially etc doesn't seem to bother me much at all now. Very strange. I don't know if this feeling is just a temporary phase but as of right now, I really don't care about whether I am discriminated because of my race etc. Really weird...

@ anonymous 2: I hope so too. Thanx.

@ Allen: lolz. dude, thats what everybody told me when I reached home this year: That I've aged like crazy since they last saw me. That sux :-(

Anonymous said...

sonam: hey bro,i am glad that u are experiencing these things in life..and i am sure with ur talent, you'll go a long way wherever u r!
hallelujiah!!!

p.s: a merry xmas to u and ur family and a happy new year 2007!!!

No Hidden Depths said...

A ropui hle mai! Tunge lawm ber ang le? :) ;)
Hey bro,
All the best for the new year and Christmas wishes to you, family and your loved ones :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Kima,
Misual sim pakhat chungah poh van a mi te an lawm,Vanmipuite pawn an lawmpui che.Hnehna neitu awm ngheng in kal zel ang che.

John Fanai

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tlk said...

hey kima, u don't kno me and i've only heard of you from ppl ( ur famous ), but having gone thru ur blog, all I can say is, God can accomplish anything, all we need is faith! And from the little I know of u ,my belief in this is strenthened, thanks for sharing with us. God bless

illusionaire said...

Thanx sonam and no hidden depths. Merry Xmas and a happy new year to you too. Thanx John, that means a lot to me. tlk, am so glad what I went through could affect your life a little bit too. Wishes and prayers.

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