Saturday, July 13, 2024

“Thy Grace is sufficient…”

Today we are blessed to see another Good Friday ~ the commemoration of Christ’s crucifixion ~ at Golgotha, which has immeasurable significance in the life of a Believer and equally on her demise. This demise is not “The End” but a beginning of an eternal after life, promised by Christ’s resurrection. So these three days starting with Good Friday and culminating on Easter Sunday marks both an end and a beginning ~ and the will to believe and accept this end and this beginning is each individual’s. Theoretically, to underscore the significance of Good Friday and Easter Sunday to a people that claim to being Christians would be preaching to the Choir ~ and so, far be it for the media to preach to the Choir. In any case, it is neither the job of the media nor the right place for the media to preach any religious tenets because in any secular nation, media is expected to be secular ~ and basically leave the experts to deal with religion. However, because ours is a Christian-majority State, it would be interesting to understand how Christians in Nagaland perceive Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, especially against the backdrop of the events of elections in our State since the 1960s. In other words, how would we rate ourselves as Believers of Christ (Christians) and all that He stands for on a scale of 1 to 10? The thing about the human being and human life is that we cannot separate our bodies, hearts, minds and souls and put them in water-tight compartments ~ then take out separately, as and when the need arises. So, we cannot be a good Christian when we are in the Church but a corrupt Christian elsewhere. Such compartmentalization is the very antithesis of Christ’s teachings ~ and the raison d’etre of His crucifixion and resurrection. So, actually, we cannot rate ourselves as Believers of Christ (Christians) and all that He stands for on a scale of 1 to 10. Either we are all in as Christ’s Believers or we are totally out ~ there is no question of being semi or half a Christian; or, of being a good or bad Christian. Either we are Christian or we are not ~ for being a Christian is not an issue of pedigree, race, culture, traditions and customary laws but of repentance and faith. So, it does seem misaligned to do all the ‘thanksgiving’ for overcoming good with the weapon of bad, doesn’t it? During this period of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, what exactly are we repenting for and what exactly are we thankful for? Mind you, there is enormous profit and prosperity in evil ~ in the ways of the world ~ which would be not a bad thing by itself except for the fact that we have souls. And, to secure this soul of ours, Christians need to follow certain difficult but necessary paths ~ paths that lead us to Golgotha and the Aedicule (which encases the ancient cave believed to be where Jesus’ body was entombed and resurrected). And the paths we evidently chose to tread on are a long way off ~ in fact, in a totally opposite direction ~ from Golgotha and the Aedicule. Evidently, because the sum total of all our social, cultural, traditional, political, economic and relational interfaces, even amongst us, are so distanced from Christ’s teachings. So, how do we “Christians” observe Christ’s crucifixion and His resurrection? With holidays, of course ~ nice weekend break, huh? But, how about the holy days? Fasting for a few hours and feasting like there is no tomorrow? It’s sad, isn’t it, that we have no personal and/or collective testimony to show even a speckle of Christ in us? After the ‘circus of democracy’ Christians of Nagaland participated in as clowns and entertained the world, after the lies that are re-cycled repeatedly, after the hypocrisy we believe fools everyone and after the ‘spoils of democracy’ we hungered for and grabbed with both hands, not many would be convinced of our Christian credentials. But exactly because of that we need to meditate all the more on Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection and hope that their blessings would not pass us by. These three days are another opportunity for us to say: “Thy Grace is sufficient unto us…”