Thursday, December 27, 2012

Santa Claus is coming to town.


I am spending my Christmas with friends.A lovely couple,and a five year old who is uncannily bright.She has been writing her letter to Santa for Christmas for quite sometime.She has a list she has made and written to Santa for.Nothing much but a fluffy rabbit,ring(any ring at all) and nintendo.She is more excited about Christmas then anything.She has been to neighbours on either side with her Christmas card and her gifts.A ninety year old lady who is spending her Christmas alone and a family on the other side.
She is excited about the Christmas party tomorrow which her parents are planning to host for their friends.She has been on the karoake practising her christmas songs for the get-together tomorrow.
For some reason she thought 25th was the Christmas eve.She was dissapointed to know that today was the Christmas eve because she thought she ought to have been a better girl,eaten her food early and gone to bed so that santa could come in with her gift.
She has a special message from Santa from the north pole who has a book with her name on it in his library with her record.I cannot wait to see her reaction when she gets her message on-line tomorrow.
Her mother asked her-'O, have you bought a gift for Chering?She emphatically answered-'Chering ,all you have to do is ask!and you will get it'  -I was stunned for a moment.Ask what you want and Santa will get it for you.'
Santa is nowhere in the bible.
The joy and exuberence behind the whole mystic of Santa that lights up the lives of children like O' ,fills my heart with wonder.
Come Lord Jesus into the lives of the little ones......Santa may be a figment of someones imagination but the joy,wonder and amazement it brings into these little lives makes me believe You are very near.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

HEART OF THE MATTER.

 I sincerly thought having the presence and the blessings of the Lord was to be blessed in the objective sense by tangible stuff.I have seen well-meaning christians gloat about how the Lord has blessed them ...etc.
I realise now that it is much more than that.Being blessed by the Lord  is much more than anything to have a clean slate before the Lord.
How is that possible ?
'In those days John the baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea and saying,'Repent for the kingdom of heaven has come near .This is who was spoken through the prophet Isaiaih:
'A voice of one calling in the wilderness,Prepare the way for the Lord,make straight paths for him.''
A repentant heart of a child kneeling down before the father in submission is an attitude of life which makes way  for the kingdom to come.
How important was the message John brought before the birth of Christ and how important it is for him to make straight paths for him and prepare the way for the Lord in our hearts.It requires submission.
When we harden our hearts about things that matter to the Lord this is what happens.

“‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding;
    be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
10 Make the heart of this people calloused;
    make their ears dull
    and close their eyes.[a]
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
    hear with their ears,
    understand with their hearts,
and turn and be healed.”

May we be released from the bubbles of our high castles and rhetorics ,comfortable kingdoms we have created for ourselves,sins of ommision and comission  to truly kneel down in repentance before the King of Kings lest we inherit the prophecy of Isaiah.
Have mercy on me Lord!



Monday, December 10, 2012

A whisper from my God.

This morning I received a letter from YWAM, Australia .
I have been praying for their ministry for a while.
It was a video of their ministry in london.
It was a whisper from my God.
My God who is alive.
Who never fails to answer me.http://youtu.be/zcOt59y7TzI


















Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sleep outs!


I was working in a hospital in one of the more remote places in India.The place inspires so many things to write about but my amused memory goes back to a wooden couch I inherited  
from my friends when they left the place the day after I joined in.It was intact.
I am not normally a couch potato,atleast I think I am not because I remember during my post-graduate days walking up to my boss to ask him if I should get my thyroids checked.He asked me why and when I revealed my doubt about the possibility of my thyroids  hypofunctioning  ,he gave me an amused look and expressed that it might be the other way round.That was the day I shelved any thought of my being lazy.I had got a stamp from a doctor and that too an extremely competant one.
However for some reason the plastic crepes which held the couch together started giving away,till one day when my friends arrived for their yearly visit there were two big holes in the seating place.
I can be quite careless with these things.All my life people have done things for me.It was my parents,siblings,friends...and the list goes on.Even at this age when any of my family members visit me they will be at it right from the word go.
I offered the two rooms that I had to my friends and decided to sleep in the couch.
They looked at the couch with a straight face,believe me.
I slept on the couch with the two holes,had a goodnight's sleep.
Another time I was travelling with Dr Annie Jacob,one of my seniors from Vellore to Oddanchattram.We had this habit of buying a ticket and boarding the general compartment which has a ladies coup.We managed to get one overhead birth and two seats near the window.
I offered Dr Annie the sleeper and stretched my self between the two seats with a few loose baggages to support my back.Every fifteen minutes or so Dr Annie would lift up her head from her pillow and ask me 'Chering are you sure you are allright?'.Till she stopped getting a response from me because I had dozed off while she had not.
I have also slept on stone benches in Satbarwa.The temperature soars up to 49 and plus during summers.The electricity is nothing to write home about.One can sometimes time the movement of the fan to, one rotation per thirty seconds.
I lived in Satbarwa for ten years and did not buy a cooler or an air-conditioner.That was me,I was not making a stand,I just could not be bothered.
The stone bench in the open air with the stars to look at and the pleasant breeze was heaven....I spent so many summer nights on those benches...nobody else did....
I love the stars.I remember my enthusiastic uncle taking us to the Nehru planetorium in Delhi.I was fascinated when the lights went off and the skies lit up .I was lost in a totally different world it seems ,I had fallen a sleep.
I had my star education much later on a sleepout on the terrace of the ladies quarter on a summer night with my good friends Malini,Nithila,Ally,et al.
I also vividly remember waking up at four in the morning to go to the quiet corner.
That was Sheba and me.
We would sit on top of those beautiful cemetries reading the bible.
I also did my exercises there.
It was not unusual to see me upside down at 4 AM in the morning on the cemetry.
Fortunately for us ,not many people ventured out to the place at that hour.
Yes,I had a couch in Herbertpur as well and that was the first thing my friends noticed when they visited me there.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Pearls in the sand.


There is a young lady downstairs who keeps an eye on me.It so turned out that she happens to be one of the few believers in the block.She is the first one to notify me about any mails I get,very eager to be helpful.
The other day while in the wards I happened to meet her and she passed on the message that I had a mail in the doctor's common room.
Not what I would have expected.
I ran down to the common room and surely right on the top was a mail addressed to me in a neat familiar hand-writing .It was a birthday card from Dr C and W.
Dr C and W are colleagues who have worked with me in the hospital I spent the earlier ten years of my life as a doctor.
He was the best student in the batch he belonged to at St Thomas' at London.He did his specialisation in surgery and chose to come to India to work as a missionary.I remember one of his batchmates putting it as -'the utmost for His highest!'
He dedicated better part of forty years for the region.
When we joined afresh as post-graduates he served as the cushion in the harsh realities of the tough life which surprised us to no end.
One could write books on the testimony of the person.
I remember one patient narrating how he had had  a herniae operation done by Dr C and when he was in the blurr of anaesthesia he had actually seen a vision of Lord Jesus tending to him.That man was a hindu and he shared this when I met him in the streets of Daltonganj.
One picture ,I think I will carry forever in my heart was an easter sunday.We made it a point to meet every sunday at his place for a time of fellowship.On easter we planned to have the Lord's supper as well.
There we were worshipping the Lord and suddenly the air became so beautiful ,I remember all of us had tears in our eyes even as we continued in worship.I remember Dr C saying' it will be like this in heaven'.He ended the session with a simple ,heart to heart talk with the Father which was the trademark of his person.
Since then all of us have moved on in life-but I carry that picture in my heart and I am sure the others do too.
Coming back to the context,I would not have bothered to send me a birthday card if I did not have the decency to update me my latest address.But that is me and this is Dr C.
In the steady simplicity of his remembering the mundane I see the reflection of his Master.Thank you Lord for your servants.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Heart before brain.


She was thirty five,a mother of two,an afro-european lady,would have passed off for a teenager.She was brought into the A&E with a consolidation unresponsive to antibiotics.The radiological interpretation was,could be atypical pneumonia or any other sinister diagnosis.
So there was an infection control red alert.
I have worked with tuberculosis patients for the better part of ten years in India and I have seen some real bad cases.Not that we have the facility for great infection control standards in India,but by God's grace I have not contracted that infection till date.
However it is a new country that I am in and was not really sure of the rules.
However I decided to just approach her and talk to her as I would a regular patient.
She looked a little distracted and and then one of the nursing staffs entered looking like a person in the outer space with masks,aprons and with profuse apology saying that she had had instructions from her superior to be careful.She gave me a wierd look .
I caught a glimpse of the expression on my patient's face and I saw a sad shadow fall across it.
I felt a twinge in my heart and thanked the Lord that I had decided to follow my heart instead of my head.
I have carried that sad expression in my heart ever since.

Looking up to the patients.


I cannot tell you what the most important lessons I have learnt in life is but I can definately tell you about an important lesson I learnt this week.
Every day we have different consultants coming in to see the patients .I have this habit of pulling a chair and comfortably sitting down while I go about talking to my patients.It was not a consious act on my part but my cousin who has a wider experience of the west was telling me how important it was to do that so that the patients do not feel talked down to.
I have had many patients expressing their gratitude for making them feel at home because at the end of the day they are frightened of coming to the hospital.
This week I had the opportunity to go for a consult with two local consultants at two different times .
What really struck me was the stance they took even as they talked to the patients.
They went down on their haunches and talked up to the patient even as the patients looked down at them with utter trust and comfort.
I was deeply touched.
I have no idea what is recommended,I have not seen the others do that,but to me it sent a non-verbal signal of deep concern, empathy and an expression of the preciousness of the person before them.
It was something enlightening for me ,almost like the picture of Lord Jesus washing the disciple's feet....Lord,give me that level of sensitivity.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Startle of a breeze on a birthday afternoon.

Every time I have celebrated my birthday in a place which is new I have always trusted in the Lord to provide .This year I celebrated my birthday in Basildon.It has been a little over a month since I joined here.My cousin Famsie called up from New Zealand the first thing in the morning to wish me a happy birthday and to let me know that she had dreamt that I wanted to eat a pink coloured cake so she insisted that I have one.
I had a good quiet time early in the morning and wondered to myself how the Lord would arrange for my birthday to be celebrated.I walked into my workplace and got down to work as I usually do.
Midway during work ,one of the FY1s walked into our ward with two huge cartoons full of beautifully decorated cup-cakes she had baked herself.Even as the senior in the ward called out to all of us to help ourselves to it ,I smiled to myself ,chose a pink one and thanked the Lord .Did they know it was my birthday? No.
For birthday present I got a nine days of leave during christmas.
Our rotas are arranged by an administrator .By God's grace my week off seems to fall from 24th of December till the 30th of December and I also have the weekend prior to it.The lady who checked it for me smiled and declared ,'You seem to be one of the lucky few!'
With joy bubbling in my heart I thanked the Lord for it.
I am praying for some guidance as to how and where I should spend it.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Pro-choice??

No,I do not think anyone should have the right to abortion.Life is a miracle concieved by God,a precious gift from the creator .
Just this morning I was reading from the book of Leviticus and reading through the list of abomination and the punishment God expects for them and was fascinated to note that the first thing on the list reads-"20:1-3 Do not give your children to
Molech to be put to death (sacrificed)-
Amazing God, I thought.Our God knew what was best for his creation and put the laws forward to protect us.Every child who is conceived has a 'right to life'.That miracle of life is amazing in it's ability to adapt and come up with surprises in the most unlikely way.That is why it is a miracle.Every child conceived comes with a plan from the creator and when we take the decision to snuff that life out we not only defy the creator but also deny the child the opportunity to live life.
I ,in my practise as a doctor in a developing country,  have seen women come to the clinic with multiple somatic complaints and gynaecological problems which somehow always seems to trace back to an abortion they have had somewhere in the past.I asked a psychiatrist back home why it was so,he said it might perhaps be a sense of guilt buried deep within which surfaces as somatisation.
I find it absolutely distressing when I come across ladies who visit our hospitals and express a desire to go through abortion.I stop my work and spend time with them.Almost all the ladies who have come to us come in a state of crisis ,unable to think clearly ,pressed by situation where they see no road ahead.There was just one lady I remember who walked into my clinic and wanted an abortion because the gap between her children were too short.She changed her decision after counselling and I am sure she will not regret her step because she has honoured what God desires.
I personally find the term "Pro-choice"a little strange.One decides to terminate a life and thats it and that is labelled as such.How can deciding something which is an end of the road decision in itself , be a "pro-choice"decision?
There is no end to that track once one gets going....'The vulnerable' need to be protected and restored to the wholeness of what the creator meant it to be,whether it be a baby conceived in a womb of a mother or that teenager who's become pregnant due to no fault of hers.Restoration requires one to be in tandem with the original creator or we will be left with a poor imitation in hand.The gap will show sooner than later.The choice is ours for the taking.

Monday, October 29, 2012

it suddenly strikes you that you have a long way to go.....!

I haven't been at my blog lately.Last week while talking to a patient who

had been reffered by the general practitioner,I was in for a slight shocker.A

side of me emerged which I had to literally fight against.I had spent a half

an hour or so talking to the patient,a consultant had come in and explained

things to her and then a third consultant came in and explained things

again,this time it was her regular consultant.I heard a sigh from the lady-

'There that was entirely simple and straight-forward and for the first time I

understand what is happening to me.'

It was a little unexpected and I found myself mentally withdrawing from the

patient,slightly shocked by her reaction and then I was taken aback by my

own reaction.

Here was a person having to struggle with a metastatic ca with end-stage

renal failure with parameters high enough to qualify for dialysis but

asymptomatic and it seemed almost in a state of denial and here was me

getting into my shell,so sensitively prickly over nothing but the truth that

she had stated.

It struck me that I had miles to go..........

Sunday, October 14, 2012

ARISE !

Today was a day of celebrating a ministry called 'Arise' in the church.It is a

ministry that caters to the youth  and children.One lady was called out to

pray and she testified about the ministry the youngster in the church were

doing.I believe the youngsters speak words of affirmation into other

lives,speak about Jesus to their friends ,take time to use their talents to raise

funds for the needy but most importantly she shared about a little child in

the church who was asked what she would like for christmas and she said

she would like a proper Bible.What she meant was till then she had to make

do with a children's bible.I was deeply touched even as we as a church

prayed for them.

Yesterday evening I was listening to Hillsong rendition of 'Hossana',there is

a line whch says "you will raise up a selfless generation....what breaks your

heart will break mine" ......amazing I thought.

I was thinking to myself the last week,that for a christian, persecution

should be to see the Lord's heart breaking and the endeavour should always

be to bring Him joy...that should simplify a lot of things for us.

Next time we stand back smugly to gloat at what we have achieved we

could very well put it in a scale to ask does it break the Lord's heart or does

it bring Him joy....or it does not fit into the scale at all!

We will know exactly where we are!

Friday, October 12, 2012

What a small God we serve!

I am well into the last week of my first month here.It has been quite a

journey.It is quite a strange feeling working in a situation where you are

working in an entirely new paraphenalia just getting used to the system and

the ways.It has been different.For one I am getting to know a side of

England I did not know existed although if one were to follow the history

closely one would expect it to be so.I got to know a new term this last

week.The term was 'evacuee'.This word has been mentioned so many times

in my interaction with people ,I was shocked by it at first.We have the

population who were the 'evacuees' of the two world wars.One gentle lady

told me that she was evacuated when she was five years old and noone ever

came back to collect her after the war was over.Another gentleman told me

that he was evacuated to Wales,he was eleven then and that is how he learnt

to speak Welsh.One would think they are the British and have lived an easy

life.

When I just lay back and think this whole world war thing through,it all

seems so very ridiculous now,however when men lose reason they

completely lose it.A ninety eight year old lady asked me to pray for her

even as she was fighting her sky high sugar levels.When I asked her whom

should I pray to she says'God'.She told me in so many words,'Pray to your

God'.I told her my God was Jesus.She gently whispered'Same here'.I prayed

a short prayer even as I found myself reduced to tears....it felt so sweet and

wonderful to be able to pray together with someone who had seen more

than double of the life I had been through.One sees history unfolding every

day here.It runs deep.

One thing I have learnt during my short time here,no we are in no way hard

off.We have not suffered more,we are by no means the better people

because we have chosen to do what we are doing.We need to come off our

high horses and repent before God from the heart .When He comes

again we might be in for the biggest surprises of our lives.As it was

before ,He will find the pearls in 'what the world thinks as most unlikely of

places'.Forgive me Lord, for making you as small as my mind with it's

many fold perception is.




 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Bought with a price.

Just come back from spending a restful week at my friend's place.

Shifted room yesterday to a better room which overlooks the green on the

outside.Went to the baptist church which seems to be where it should

be.The church was full and alive.

Today was the harvest day and it was celebrated accordingly with all the

proceeds going to a place which apparently is a home to many people both

orphans and not.

The history of the place goes that a small girl child was found to be alone

due to a mishap.An elderly lady who lived alone was requested by a

gentleman of means to provide for a home for her while he funded it and

that is how the home is said to have started .There was a special instructions

that the contribution brought be non-perishables,since all of it goes into the

storage to feed the borders throughout the year.The home apparently

survives on support from the churches around Essex.

The worship was lifting and the message was a matter of fact study of 1st

Cornithians,chapter 7.I walked to and from the church,under the bridge,over

the lawns,footpaths and the bright sunny morning.

I came back with a message in my heart,"you are not your own-you were

bought with a price ,you belong to Jesus."

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Bollywood trying to pump some sense into the mass.

Yesterday was friday.My friends invited me to accompany them to a

movie,a comedy called 'Oh my God'.It was in a predominantly Indian

settlement half an hours drive from the city of London.It was a bollywood

movie with Paresh Rawail .Supposedly a comedy,Paresh Rawail ,normally

carries a movie well on his shoulders.I liked the movie.

It was a satire directed against religion of any form.For a country like India

it was almost revolutionary.It infact challenges the audience to actually

think and make an informed choice.It denounces temples and any form of

rituals and even idols!!

It infact,challenges the audience to read the Holy scriptures and understand

it whether it be Gita,Bible or a Koran.It talks about becoming a friend of

God.

I thought to myself-"It is atleast a step forward."

It ended with a quote from Gita which sounded like "You shall know the

truth and truth shall make you free"

I for one would like to say Amen to that.
 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

"A God who never fails me."

This last week has been a restful time at my friend's place.

Her five year old Ojasvi,a tiny little lady,very british in her ways but an

only precious child has become my friend.Every morning before she goes to

 school and in the evening after she gets back,we play together.Reading to

each other,playing scrabbles,play-acting Rapunzel and whatever fancies

us.It's fascinating relating to a brit five year old.Apart from that I am
 
catching up with my friend from college days I am meeting after five years

during which she has given birth to Ojasvi,a much sought after child who

was born two months too soon,was in the NICU for two months or so and

now is a delightful five year old.

We have been having regular cooking sessions.We cooked momos

today,biryani-the hadi style yesterday and stir fry the day before.

During the day I have been getting my much loved time to just be.Not only

am I spending time doing some reading,basking in the sun,taking

photographs,discovering tree houses and doll's house but also am able to

spend time with the Word and listen to His leading which is as always  at

the point and amazing.

There were a few issueson my mind.One was about the tithe and

there were some pending issues I needed clarity for.

The spirit of the Lord led me through His

Word and people.

I go back to the campus on saturday morning.I need to get a few things

straightened before I join work on Monday for another three weeks of

working.

I thank the Lord for His providence.He is a great God who takes care of our

every need.This week has been a week of spending time in the restfulness of

His presence.

I remember how faithful the Lord has been to the promise He gave me 

 in HCH on June 26th,he continues to be....

“I am for you,I love you,I believe in you.I will not fail you.I will provide for

you.I will bless you.I will give you rest.I will strengthen you.I will answer

you.”

This was in my blog of June 26th,"Life through the spirit."

My God never fails me.

Amen.

My friend is a hindu.


 

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The last few days.

The last few days have been hectic.The last but one day to my off week I was hit by an onslaught of cardiac patients.If you were to ask me I love cardiology.It is my favourite subject.I have managed so many cardiac patient's in my life and yet when it comes to managing patients here one likes to follow the local protocol.So fondiparanex comes into the picture.I remember ,during the herbertpur days ,there was a medical representative who used to drive us up the wall trying to promote fondiparanex.The moment we used to see him we used to run off .
So our patients rarely got fondiparenex,thanks to the MR.
I am hand writing each and every protocol into a notebook even as I come to it.I think it is basically following everything to the book since every type of investigation is available.
Today I wrote minutest details about paracetamol poisoning.
I got a local mobile sim for myself.Washed a whole pile of clothes,went downtown and watched basildon enjoying a saturday in the town centre,went in for a cold drink into a restaurant and decided to order coke float.I seriously thought we had invented coke float in one of the ice-cream shops in Bankura during our medical college days,almost more than fifteen years ago and lo here it was in a restaurant menu.I had to take a snap and the owner turned out to be a Guju from Nairobi.As soon as he heard that I was from India he offered to refill my glass with coke.I thanked him but declined the offer of extra coke but requested him to take the snap nevertheless.I am beginning to think Basildon is filled with Gujaratis.Every stone throw away I meet one of them. The closest I  have been to meeting so many gujaratis in a row was when I boarded the early morning train from Dehradun to Delhi.Ten minutes after the train reached Delhi,yours truly woke up.I was struggling to drag my battered suitcase across the train corridor when I realised it was a hopeless case.A whole file of extra healthy men and women in shorts,dragging in expensive looking suitcases,smelling of money were standing in the corridor all the way to the door.The train was Gujarat bound.Nobody lifted a finger to help me but reluctantly made way for me to deboard since there was a locked-in situation.
This gentleman however went out of his way to be nice and helpful.
 

Precious scraps in my purse.

Am I a wee bit sentimental or what ! I have moved houses ,lost my

purse ,have been through various phases in my life, taken most things under

my stride by God's grace ,but somethings have gone along with me.I keep

chucking old papers,spending old money,wearing out old clothes,even

walked past a lot of people in my life but somethings I hold on to and it

keeps passing the chucking test.

One such precious item is a 10 pound scottish note which has been in my

purse for the better part of the decade.It was the winter of 2006,November

to be exact and I was visiting England for my ERS fellowship

.Christmas was around the bend and I was at the Bink's in

Cheltenham.

I received my first post in England that year and it was a christmas card

from Scotland fromDr Anne Urquat.This ten pound note was neatly folded

within the card .

I had met Dr Anne Urquat briefly when she visited Satbarwa years after she

left India.I was deeply touched by the thought that went behind that act.I put

that note in my purse and it survived my time in England,moving in and out

of two hospitals and it is here in my purse,a mute statement of a

commitment that was brought forward again this year when during the CMF

meet the host remembered her time as an elective in Kacchwa hospital and

the first name she mentioned was Anne Urquat.My heart was filled with

deep joy and a side of me wanted to fish out that ten pound scottish note

from my purse but instead I just said yes ,I knew her.
 
 
I have a few thing with me which have survived the chucking test,I can

perhaps write about them in time.

A week into it.

Gotta get used to the way things are done here.Predictability factor is missing.Every day you are on to something new.I have never been in a situation where you actually get a week off after five days of ten hours week.It is like as though someone is saying ,'have a life!'So it is a lazy saturday morning.I put in my clothes for laundry.Recieved a note from Anu asking me whether she should come by to pick me up for the week-end.
Got to get a few things in order.
I am shifting room this week-end for one.I am trying to get my debit card working.Have not decided whether I want to go to South-end on sea for a day or two just to be away.
One good news was after one and half weeks of sharing a flat ,yesterday I came to know that two of my flatmates are good believers.Got talking to one of them but the other one I must have seen and said hello to her once.She was on night call the first week I came and has been on a holiday eversince.
All believers who live in the campus visit the baptist church round the corner.I was blessed the last week I went for the service.One of my flat-mates apparently attends the bible studies there.
I look forward to meeting her once she gets back.
Otherwise I have a lot of fellow countrymen around me.
A Gujju lady lives next doors.Another Gujju gentleman lives in the oppositte flat and a tamilian srilankan lady lives upstairs....and the list goes on.

 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The crucifix.

C has alzheimers.She must be atleast eighty five.She accidentally consumed her husband's medicine and was brought to the A&E.Her husband looked more frail than her, was stone deaf and had to be wheel chaired around but he would never fail to chuckle aloud whenever he guessed that C wasn't talking sense.Sixtyfive years of marriage ,onslaught of debility and the alzheimers to boot had not diminished their deep love for each other.I asked her my usual bout of memory questions.Did she know who the monarch was?She did.She further added 'and here ,next to me is Prince Philip'.Her husband gave another chuckle.In between,I helped her with her tea cup as she was struggling to drink from it.They immediately warmed up and the next thing I knew, her husband wanted me to help her put back her crucifix chain that the doctor had asked her to remove during a procedure.
I was extremely touched by the sense of trust and camaderie and suddenly C started telling me about how much her church meant to her and how she had loved to be part of the choir and how the church was now planning to get back to using latin during the service.
We extended our hands towards each other, the crucifix sealed the deal.
I was touched even as C was oblivious to what was happening.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Is what we are doing enough?

The quality of lab services we provide has to go beyond the rhetorics.The backbone of every hospital and clinical pratice is the laboratory .We have to admit that lab services remain one of our weakest points.When it remains weak,slowly the quality of medical services provided become more provisional and we remain limited in the range of medical services we can provide well. We can never think of improving our lab service till by some miracle some specialist pops into our hospital,decides to stay back and the hospital gives it the necessary backing.

It is extremely mandatory that each lab personal undergo one to one evaluation at a regular interval.That keeps one on their toes.

Apart form the quality control measures which apparently has been introduced in all the hospitals ,the lab continues to be a problem area.One time generalised training and workshop for the personals DO NOT HELP.After attending umpteen number of seminars and workshops they go back to the same way of working.One is yet to see a definate change take place.

This same rule goes for every other personal working in the mission hospital.When I decided to come to England for a year of acute medicine ,one constant line I often heard was 'What one learns in England will be of no use for the mission hospitals we go back to.'

I found these statements highly irritating for one,but did not bother to correct them .But the more medicine I learn here ,the more I wonder if I have done justice to my patients in the hospital I have worked in.With the limited facilities available we have done our best but at the end of the day we are talking about equitable health-care.Unless we know what the patients in the first world get, how are we going to strive towards getting as much for the least of us.

We are serving in the name of the King of Kings but we often serve and take pride in the fact that we don't act like it.

Abstinence on a personal front is commendable but not JUST when we are abstemious towards the service of those very people who give us the identity we so seem to covet.The poor deserve the best ,especially when we claim to do it in the name of Him,who is the end of quality,beyond compare.Our utmost for His highest! Do we stand?

Another day in the UK.

Today has been a challenging day.Saw a patient with a florid ulcerative colites flare,a man apart from the steroids the doctor had put him on, was on steroids for body buiding.His bowels were giving him a hard time and he was having rectal bleed with serious discomfort in the abdomen.His CRP was normal and his X-ray abdomen did not show features of toxic megacolon ,stools were sent for routine and Cl.difficile toxins.We referred the patient to gastro on VTE prophylaxis.
The second patient I saw through was a patient on CAPD with CKD grade 5.
She told me that she had been anuric for the better part of one and half years and was on dialysis every night for nine hours.She had come to the regular clinic but had been sent to the A and E because she looked unwell.Her blood gasses and the electrolytes were fine.Her renal parameters looked unbelievable.She had bilateral wheezes with no evidence of fluid over-load.She did have a short history of cough with yellow phlegm for which she had been prescribed Amoxycillin by her GP.The renal consultant came over and took over the patient.
The third gentleman came in with DVT of the lower limb with sudden onset of pleuritic chest pain which was radiating all the way to the back.His troponins were normal.ECG showed LAD with Q3T3.Heart rate of 77/min on beta blockers for HTN.D-dimers were over 4000 and the CTPA showed bilateral filling defects of the pulmonary artery.Well's score for clinical probability of PE was high(9).His ABG showed low oxygen levels.
So a diagnosis of PE was made and the patient put on treatment dosage of LMW heparin(1.5mg/KG) with overlapping dose of Warfarin and the patient was simultaneously referred to the anticoagulation clinic.
Running after and settling three patients is enough work for one day.
I finished work well after my take was over but I felt satisfied,even as I bid my last patient of PE goodnight after a word or two of reassurance.He had been in the army,had seen the coronation of Queen Elizabeth first hand.I get amazed by the elderly.They come through with diseases one cannot even think of and yet even then they are more concerned about making life easier for us.He reminded me of my father.

 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The napkin

Today is sunday.The weather forecast says that it is going to rain and it did.I have run out of groceries so I had to pop down to the market to get some supplies.Tescoes-I never fail to get what I want.Even managed a chilli paste.
A senior has offered to take me to a church today at six in the evening.My first in the UK.The weekends seem quite deserted in the hospital corridors.I had my breakfast in the canteen.Five items of hot cooked meal,I chose sausages,tomatoes,a fry made of potatoes and onions,I thought it looked a little over the top but I managed to eat it without getting sick.
Met an old lady on a walker,who swore like a fisherman but was dressed to the hilt,quite spirited I must say.
It did rain as was forecasted.Was waiting for my transport so I sat down at the Wimpy's to catch a hot chocolate with cream and the napkin caught my fancy.

Dansbury.

I spent the saturday yesterday with Dr Samuel and family.Had a lovely indian lunch and then drove to Dansbury to attend a CMF meet.Met a lot of people with old mission connections,heard what Julian had to say about what CMF is doing ,spent the afternoon talking about the bees and the weather,had wads of lovely tea which Maggie kept rustling.
By the time it was all over,it was around six in the evening.Saw some cooking apples on the trees,a lovely compound with a garden,lawn tennis court,tree house and what not.Walked around a bit but the chill was unbeatable.There was fire in the hearth.Some more tea.
It was time to say goodbye.
Not the usual way we do our meetings back home.
 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Have a good weekend Mrs X.

It's been less than a week since I have started working in London.Slowly but surely, the Lord's teaching me step by step,ways to settle down.I have started doing the ward works inspite of the access to the trust clinical hub coming through only on Monday.It was a full day today.Working on the ground.
The first day or two were the days of just watching the world go by.Apart from the system one has to get familiar with,there is a whole line of abbreviations one has to interpret,one can call it the Basildon lingo.The commercial names of the drugs used is the other thing .I run around quite a bit asking questions which is normal for me,my sister often says I take people's trip interviewing them.
It amazes me to see the patient's who come in.Most of them are elderly citizens,amazingly perky with the wisdom of the age who are unusually kind.There are many extremely fragile,like kids,who look at you with lovely innocent eyes.Mrs X turns her head each time someone walks past her door.Yesterday when I saw her it was her daughter she was on the lookout for.Each time someone walked past she would hopefully ask,'Is that you Doris?'Today the question had changed to 'Is that you Paul',and then she further asked me ,'did you see my son?'
I happened to walk past her ward so I just dropped in to say hi.Seeing me with my bag,she asked me are you going home now?I said yes.She has dementia and was brought in yesterday.She was found face down in her house by her daughter.
Even as I bid Mrs X a goodbye for the weekend,I see her comfortably settle down to another bout of expectations,I am not sure who.
 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Getting to know myself!

Today was my first day of work at Basildon Hospital.
I got my security card made,applied for the e-access,rebooted my bank account,got the feel of the work I was to do in the coming days.
Saw a case of florid sub-arachnoid haemorhage Hunter and Hess scale-grade 3,another case of multiple sclerosis with eye defects(reminded me of a little child paramjit had brought to me with similar symptoms,she completely recovered at that time but my guess is she has MS(although she has presented with the symptoms only on one occassion ),a case of oesophageal diverticulum and the  usual medical cases.
Acute medical ward is an ideal place for reviewing and updating  one's medicine without the stress of A and E or the prolonged management of chronic diseases.
It is also about doing things in an orderly manner,following protocols and a chance to revise medicine.The only thing that appalled me was the one week break we are liable to get every twenty one days.This is the first month and I almost asked my consultant aloud,'what am I going to do for one week?'May be I will have answers for it by and by,but I will really have to learn to face myself instead of trying to hide  behind work and whatever else I hide myself behind.
This time in England should be able to give me some answers to a lot of questions I have about myself.
 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Sanctuary..

Sanctuary is the place you go to,to enter rest.
Basildon has a sanctuary located almost close to the reception ,next to the canteen where counselling takes place.It has been labelled 'all faith room'.
I entered the sanctuary just to have a look around and my eyes fell on the board which had post-cards pinned to the wall with 'messages to God'.It is meant to be the prayer needs.
One read-Dear Lord please help me with my hip surgery and please be with my little son who is going to be at home away from his mother for the first time.Please bless him'
Love K,
Another letter read-Dear God ,please help my grand dad come through this sickness this time round.Help him to hear us and understand us and please look after him whereever he is.
Love E,
Dear Jesus,
Please be with my husband even as he goes through this tough time.
Love Em,
One more read-
Dear Jesus,
Please look after A,B ,C and D even as they have gone to be with you.
I love you.
M.
I sat down in the sanctuary and started my letter to Him as well.
 

Reading about freemasonry



"...How can we fail to pronounce Freemasonry an anti-Christian institution? .. Its morality is unchristian, ... its oath-bound secrecy is unchristian, .. taking of its oaths are unchristian, ... Masonic oaths pledge its members to commit most unlawful and unchristian acts, deliver each other from difficulty whether right or wrong, favor Masonry in political action and business transactions, sworn to retaliated, to persecute unto death the violators of Masonic obligations, ...its oaths are profane, the taking of the name of God in vain, ...the penalties of these oaths are barbarous and even savage, ...its teachings are false and profane, ...its design is partial and selfish, ...it is an enormous falsehood.

"Every local branch of the Church of Christ is bound to examine this subject, and pronounce upon this institution, according to the best light they can get. God does not allow individuals, or churches, (or pastors), to withhold action, and the expression of the opinion, until other churches are as enlightened as themselves.

"If churches who are known to have examined the subject withhold their testimony; if they continue to receive persistent and intelligent Freemasons; if they leave the public to infer that they see nothing in Freemasonry inconsistent with a creditable profession of the Christian religion, it will be justly inferred by other branches of the church, and by the world, that there is nothing in it so bad, so dangerous and unchristian as to call for their examination, action, and testimony.

"It is almost universally conceded that persistent Freemasons, who continued to adhere and cooperate with them, ought not to be admitted to Christian churches."

SKYPE,SPACE and TIME.

I have crossed half the world to come over to the UK but it is like I have never left my childhood behind.There is my family from all the world over on skype watching me,talking to me and making sure I am comfortable.My brother skyped me from Mangan,spoke to my parents,saw them after almost a month or so.Next was my sister from Delhi with my neice and my brother in law.My sister and brother -in law from Sydney were next, called in to check if I was allright on the way to the church.Muani called from Germany,caught up with her for around five minutes.
Early next morning I had but opened my eyes and there was a bleep again.This time it was my cousin from New Zealand,another from Darwin and my sister in Delhi in a group chat pulling me in.
This is the thing about family.The last time I was in a space like this was when the earthquake in Sikkim happened.We laughed the disaster through with all sorts of comic stuff that was going around even while the houses crumbled,people died,sad things happened.All of us stayed in touch.
Suddenly my cousin in New zealand remembered an incident which occured when we were kids.My dad used to take us to the boarding school in a blue city bus when we were kids.This was a public transport.After plying quite a distance my father realised he had forgotten to carry some papers.So he stopped the bus and decided to hike it home the shortest way.He went,collected his papers and came back after half an hour.
In the mean time the bus just waited for him,the public happily chatting  and simply enjoying themselves.This was Mangan!This actually happened and it's amazing how my cousin took it out from the archives of her memory this morning.These sort of memories take you back into time.

Friday, September 14, 2012

off to London to see the queen!

A week before the trip to London was a mixed bag.My sister was given a MCQ to solve by my older sister.Is she excited about the journey or is she nervous?she opted for the latter which is not quite true but I surprised myself with the number of health issues that actually came through the last week.
After starting the trip I was into it,and had no time to reflect at all.
Emirates was a pleasant surprise especially the service.Airports look all the same,Dubai was no different.
Landed in London in the morning.Worked my way to Elizabeth's house.Rested,showered,lunched  and it was off to RCP and GMC.Naa noi,who has been communicating with me thus far was a surprise.Her name sounded oriental but it was a beautiful black lady,as compassionate as she sounded in her communication who greeted me,guided me and looked after my luggage even as I went to the GMC for my id check.
Londoners get full points in the art of helping strangers.I had all sorts of people lugging my 30kg suitcase though the underground,et al.Some of them looked wee smaller then myself but were I guess stronger.
Reached Basildon at around five in the evenng.
Providence had my accomodation ready.I couldn't wait to hit the bed.After a quick dinner I was off to the dreamland sleeping off my jet lag.
The next day I worked through the personals and I join work on Monday.
Met a few people from dear India.Put faces to the names I had been communicating with.
As soon as the communication got through received letters from Dr Binks,Dr Richard.
Dr Richard and Anne are planning a trip through Essex..I look forward to meeting them.He had also copied out a bible study site on revelations for me.
Dr Binks was meticulous in the detailed directions and organising he had done .It struck me afresh how good a clinician he was because of this quality.His two paged letter was better than any guidebook one can lay hold of.
Tomorrow I guess I would have to go church hunting although Dr Binks has already connected me to a CMF i/c.here.
Like I told Naa,..'I'll find my way..Naa,..don't worry....I always do..!
I will  or  to be exact  'God will!'-He always does.

 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Half the sky-how to change the world!

This past fortnight even as I have waited for the last minute paper works to proceed I have devoured books at the rate of two to three per day.My neice who keeps squeezing in time to spend with me in between her preparation for her half yearly exams keeps a count of it regularly.We also take time out in between to slip in a few cookery shows,a hollywood movie 'wanted' and ofcourse mikado,she beats me to it almost every time.It is good for my concentration and a time out for her even as she revises her french and hindi.
Two heart-warming books were easily-'half the sky'-How to change the world by Nicholas D Kristof and Sheryl Wudunn and 'for one more day' by Mitch Albom.
I had read 'Tuesdays with Morris .'some years back and so the theme of 'One more day' is similar but if I were to put in a line that touched me the most it was-'My mother had she been alive,might have found away through to me because she was always good at that,taking my arm and sayng,'Come on Charley,what's the story?'.But she wasn't around,and that's the thing when your parents die,you feel like instead of going into every fight with a back up,you are going into every fight alone.That I guess summed up the book for me.
The other book 'Half the sky' is iconic in that it writes about the other half who owns the sky but do not get their due-'The woman".It's extreme in it's potrayel of abuse,neglect and exploitation,whereas subtly it happens all the time in all the places,culture....and it is not just woman ,it is the weak...who are exploited,abused and neglected..........isn't it the way of the world!?
Yet Christ said 'Be in the world and Not of it!' The question is are we??

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Jesus said,'I give you life and life abundantly....'

Today is teacher's day.My mother all of seventy five years is celebrating the reconstruction of her school.They have a function in school organised by her ex- students.
My mother started teaching toddlers in the church premises more than thirty five years ago when there was no concept of nursery teaching in my region.All of us have passed through that school in the church and were carted off to boarding schools early in life because there were no good schools in the region.Now when we look back we get amazed to see the array of lives that have passed through that school..foundations laid,blossomed and have moved on in life.
The fondest memories of my teachers start with my mom.There was always an element of surprise in the lessons she sprung on us and guided us through.I remember the beautiful garden,the flower arrangements,etiquettes she was so particular about,the bible stories,the nudge towards all things altruistic...our first taste of alphabets......somehow none of us siblings ever out-grew our mother...she has remained our beautifully unpredictable but stable friend.
My nursery teacher was a cheerfull lady who looked like an 'O'.A short plump doll-like lady who loved dancing to the nursery rhymes along with us.I remember her best prancing to 'I am a musician I come from fairy land i can play with my big drum...dungdumaa...dungdumaa...dungdumaa dungdumaa...'
 I remember time amd again being called out to perform 'I had a little pony'before every guest that visited the school.
My first grade teacher was Mrs Gurung.She introduced me to the vowels and double promoted me.i never attended grade two.I remember growing a bean plant ,in a tin ,in the biology class even as we learnt the basics of botany.
My sister met her more than three decades after she taught me.She was pathologically losing her memory and was disabled...and then she suddenly blurted out,'Chering Choden was an intelligent child.'My sister was startled and touched.She was quick to pass it on to me.
The first principal of the school I was in was Mr Madhusudhan Singh.He was the kindest gentleman who took our sketches seriously enough to put them in the school magazine(annual)which went on to win an award in the national scene.My picture of 'sunflower and me'... with my caricature bigger than the mountains...spoke a lot about what had been put into me as a child.
My childhood in the boarding schools are memories of sunshine,cherry trees,green...green ...lawns,blue skies beyond the green hills,Kanchendzonga coated with snow in the sun..a palate of gold,silver and myraid of hues ,my principal with his camerra ,smiling.greeting us a good morning...driving us to impromptu picnics with milk shakes and pop-corns....the TNA way....those were happy memories.
They came and they went,teachers in all shapes and sizes.One with am-meters in their pockets...,nature lovers,dreamers,striaghtjackets,ones who would talk to the plants,blackboards,...walls,some who would affirm us to embarrasment,who would take time to push us out of our comfort zones..they came ,they challenged...they watched us with curiosity...affirmed us at different times in different ways....they shared of their experiences ,they left us lessons for life..they were there for us....they showed us examples of alternative lifestyle and then most importantly they gave us room to grow.....they gave us life...
My prayer is that the Lord will make me a teacher who gives life.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

From Egypt to Canaan

Dr.Raja requested me to see Meena since she had come down with flu and was not keeping well.She helps counsel psychiatry patients in Dr Raja's clnic.Her life is a testimony in itself.Her face and neck are burnt but her soulful eyes shine through to warm your heart.A survivor of several deliberate self harm attempts,reached out to by Paramjit's church,Raja and his wife have taken her under their wings.Even as I was examining her she suddenly blurted out that she had difficulty falling asleep at night and so finds getting up in the morning difficult.I asked her why and she told me that her memories of the old tormented her and the only time she feels at peace is when she counsels her patients ,but even after she does it she goes over what she has said and wonders time and again if she could have done it differently.
I sat with her deeply touched and started talking to her.I asked her if she had some christian music that she could listen to which could lull her to sleep,she said she just dropped her mobile in the water so it does not work anymore.Instinctively before I knew it I was in a counselling mode.
I gathered that she was in a 'Martha mode',not so much about what she was doing but had a lot of thoughts worrying her.I found myself suddenly asking her what the bible says about worrying and she quoted various verses.I was lead to Deutronomy 11-vs 10,11,12.I made her open the bible and read the verses in hindi and underline it.
Suddenly the verses made so much sense.All of us are actually in the same boat.She a destitute probably,attempted to end her life umpteen number of times,burnt physically,healed spiritually by the grace of God and myself with all my baggages and illusion that I have anything more then her are dependant and are, only by the grace of God.
We are all travellers in the same boat journeying from Egypt to Canaan.Some of us see the promised land and some continue to hold on to the illusion called Egypt......she had nothing to lose it seemed.....Jesus reprimending the rich young ruler suddenly made sense......we continue to hold on to the excuses that life brings our way to hold on to Egypt but the reality is that in a blink of an eye if the Lord wills he can turn those excuses to naught and show it for the illusion that it is!
May we learn to let go and let God.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Cooking Hyderbadi Biryani and Tanish Khair!

I cooked full fledged hyderbadi biryani the other day and was fascinated by the perfectness of the recipes the khan mashas dish out ,tested -tried and amazingly accurate .
The recipes goes as such-
Mutton -1 Kg,
Rice-1 Kg,(par-boiled)
Three onions-deep fried,
Half a tablespoon of green chillies,
Half a tablespoon of saffron,
Half a tablespoon of green cardomom.
Four pieces of cloves,
A pinch of nutmeg,
 and mace,
Cinnamon -four small pieces'
Corriander-handful,
Ginger garlic paste-one tablespoon,
Jeera-half a tablespoon(Cumin seeds),
one tablespoon of salt,
half a tablespoon of red chilli powder,
half a tablespoon of lime juice,
Three tablespoon of ghee.
Curd-250gms,
Water-one cup.
Boiled egg for garnish.
Mix all the ingredients together with lamb in an appropriate utensil ,add the cup of water and cover it with the par-boiled rice.Cover the utensil and seal the cover all around with wheatflour doe to make sure that no steam escapes.
Put it on fire for twenty minutes and bingo! there you have a subtlely delicious hyderbadi biryani straight from the Khan masha's kitchen.Amazing how perfect the  result is.
Also finished reading a book by Tanish khair.
Liked a quote in it-'Did I tell you when I decided not to play piano professionally?One day I knew it was not for me.That was when my third grade piano teacher told me that I had  a perfect pitch.I knew then that I had no future in music.Perfection condemns you to glorious mediocrity.It is the gap in between your perfections ,honestly faced,and your desire for something beyond perfection that you can achieve genious.Perfect pitch,perfect life.....these are dead ends.'-Makes sense to me...I need to mull over this.

Friday, August 17, 2012

I don't know!

I am running around for my visa to the UK.Ashwin and Kenny who have joined me in the past one and half month have made my work negligible.I am therefore able to run around for my paper works.It looks like I will be out of the country by the end of the first week of September.By God's grace everything has meticulously fallen into place.
Now if you were to ask me why I am going to the UK,the frank answer would be 'I don't know'.
I am looking forward to the change of scene,hopefully I will allow the Lord to unload the immense muck  loaded on my person through conditioned living.
It has been a tremendous journey for me spiritually...and I walk on ....or do I?

Monday, August 13, 2012

The God who takes you at your word.


I have not met Mrs X for the past fifteen years ,somehow I connected with her in the facebook.She caught me unawares one afternoon and so we started chatting.I have fond memories of her as a great and unassuming missionary who used to brave the heat and dust of Bankura just to be with us .She used to climb the endless flight of stairs to a room which I shared with my two friends from Delhi out of choice even though as final years we used to get single seaters.Dressed in jeans shorts and tank tops to beat the Bankura heat ,our bohemian lifstyle used to raise quite a few eyebrows,not so Mrs X,she would be there drinking endless cups of tea brewed in the room heater,talking to us and just bonding with us.
I liked her.For some reason,I have always carried a warm memory of her. She was a bible-totting,practising ,hard-working missionary but when she was with us she became one of us ,always game for whatever we were up to.She made us feel comfortable and accepted us as we were.What a charecter it must take to let things be and yet impact us so much so that even after fifteen years she leaves a sweet fragrance behind.
Bless Mrs X and all the others who make those endless trips to reach out to the young people in the medical colleges .After fifteen years she tells me,they as a family still pray for us.
Brought back memories of Thomas who was a preacher in the local church.For some reason things did not work out so the support he used to get from the church stopped.He still had a family to raise so he started doing some woodwork in our place.Even while at his work ,his primary work remained to share the gospel.Not only did he bring some of his fellow carpenters to Christ he was constantly at it in our family quarters,talking to our helps.His primary vocation never changed.Thomas died in a bike accident while on one such missionary trip.He was broken for Christ.
At the end of the day it is not what I do for Christ but the inner work that He does in us that determines what the story of our lives are going to read.
To Him alone be all the glory who is more than able to make Thomas's out of frail vessels like us.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Living on the Edge!

Going through some transition of sort.For one I was home after quite a bit and managed to meet all my folks.The day I got back,got to meet some old friends...and it goes on.Just bid a junior from Landour goodbye .Was with me for a short visit.In the meantime,the gmc registration is come through and so I now am officially allowed to practise medicine in England.I should be running around next week for my visa.
Have been doing some extensive reading and have been rather pre-occupied with my own thoughts and with helping people with whatever.It never struck me how involved I was in it all ,till my friends in the out-patient very hesistantly blurted out one morning that I had changed ever since I had come from home.I stopped short with whatever I was doing and meticulously combed through whatever it was that they thought had changed in me.
The first in the list was that I did not eat breakfast with them(Read I did not eat their breakfast)..the reason being I have been put on a strict diet...thanks to the exclamation from my mother and my uncle as soon as they saw me!I had been on General motor diet and I was sticking to it.
Secondly,I wasn't talking as much and seem pre-occupied all the time.I could be because I do have several things running through my head at the same time.
Thirdly,not only am I pre-occupied,I am also having to talk a lot to myself these days,sometimes reasoning out,at times chiding myself ,reprimending myself ...
I borrowed a book from my dad...and so that is started me on a series of studying the disciples of Christ.Fascinating read especially the caricature of Simon Peter's life .
Bit about his wife's end time when she is led away to be crucified and his last words to her were a word of encouragement-'Remember the Lord!'
Amazing, considering where he started of and how tumultuos his journey was.Peter was crucified and Paul beheaded......and the list goes on..

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Fragrances of God in the wild.






My sister has taken in a four year old ward who belongs to a budhist family.Her name is Lorim.She has been attending the local nursery school and never fails to surprise my sister with her candour.A lot of it seems strange to my sister for she continues to bring forth observations and comments that she has picked up in the paraphernalia of a surrounding of a drastically changing culture in her region brought forth by the onslaught of the hydel project with it’s manifold baggages.She is a perky four year old.

One day the lady help, my sister has kept with her,who is a devout Christian ,Pavitra,seem to have misplaced the car keys.She was worked up and was frantically searching the house upside down for it.Suddenly the four year old quietly observed from the corner-‘Why don’t you pray to your Jesus father to help you find your keys?’.Both of them were stunned ,they did exactly that.Needless to say they found the keys.

This morning I was reading the gospel of Mathew and meditating  on Mathew chapter 8 verses 5 to 11.It’s about the faith of the centurian who comes to Jesus for the healing of his servant.The servant apparently is paralysed and in terrible suffering.Jesus offers to go to his house to  heal him but the centurian insists that he does not deserve that Jesus take so much of trouble and could just say the word and his servant would be healed.My NIV bible states that Jesus was astonished at this man’s faith.

How often do we surprise God with our faith?

Jesus says ‘Go it will be done just as you believed it would.’

 The man was healed at that very hour.

Do you and I really believe that Jesus can do it?

Fragrances of God in the wild.






My sister has taken in a four year old ward who belongs to a budhist family.Her name is Lorim.She has been attending the local nursery school and never fails to surprise my sister with her candour.A lot of it seems strange to my sister for she continues to bring forth observations and comments that she has picked up in the paraphernalia of a surrounding of a drastically changing culture in her region brought forth by the onslaught of the hydel project with it’s manifold baggages.She is a perky four year old.

One day the lady help, my sister has kept with her,who is a devout Christian ,Pavitra,seem to have misplaced the car keys.She was worked up and was frantically searching the house upside down for it.Suddenly the four year old quietly observed from the corner-‘Why don’t you pray to your Jesus father to help you find your keys?’.Both of them were stunned ,they did exactly that.Needless to say they found the keys.

This morning I was reading the gospel of Mathew and meditating  on Mathew chapter 8 verses 5 to 11.It’s about the faith of the centurian who comes to Jesus for the healing of his servant.The servant apparently is paralysed and in terrible suffering.Jesus offers to go to his house to  heal him but the centurian insists that he does not deserve that Jesus take so much of trouble and could just say the word and his servant would be healed.My NIV bible states that Jesus was astonished at this man’s faith.

How often do we surprise God with our faith?

Jesus says ‘Go it will be done just as you believed it would.’

 The man was healed at that very hour.

Do you and I really believe that Jesus can do it?

Friday, July 6, 2012

Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

Today in my quiet time I was reading from the gospel of John chapter 8-vs 1-11,for the second consequtive morning I found myself reading about this incident.I could not help myself drawing a parallel between the life of the woman caught in adultery and all of us- born in sin, condemned to death but for the grace of God in Christ Jesus.When the stones of the law are hurled at us pronouncing the death sentence ,Christ stands before us as an advocate releasing us from it.
Every incident in the Bible reads like my story and yours.
When I enter the inner temple of communion in prayer ,the sinful me strains forward to touch the helm of the garment of the spotless lamb who is interceding on my behalf at the right hand of God,when I touch him ,the connection is made,I am restored, made whole and the annointing flows through to me like the woman who was bleeding for twelve years ..Long ago during the bible studies in ODC,Dr John had told us 'You don't read the bible but the bible reads your life'.Lord teach me to allow the Bible to read my life because it is much more than a manual 'on how to live your life right-it is God breathed'-Amen.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Amazing God who has called me by name!

A week has gone by since I had that amazing affirmation from the lord.
Since then two physicians have joined me,my paper in the GMC is moving ,my patients who were sick have come for follow ups and seem to be doing well...and I am going home for a break to meet my parents.There are somethings still left to work out but I know it will happen in His good time for the lord who has called me is amazingly faithful .he never fails me.
Amen.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

‘Life through the spirit’


It was a difficult Sunday.One of those days when things looked all uphill.The heat of the day was only beaten by the deep discouragement I felt within.I decided not to go to the church and wallowed in my room hiding behind a veil of confusion,fatigue,heart-ache and just sleeplessness.Normally when I miss the church I get an up-date from someone ,but none of my friends were around so there was no way I could get one.

The pastor had a discomfort in the chest after church so I struggled to the casualty and examined him.Prescribed some medicine and then returned to my room when suddenly a storm broke out.I got up to my window to look out at the fury of the storm.

Even as I looked out I cried out to the Lord, “Lord,I am feeling discouraged ,tired,it hurts and my faith is wavering,please give me a sign that you are with me.Will you break this tree in front of my house as a sign just to encourage me?”

Next moment there was a crackling sound and the biggest branch,the size of a full tree in itself  was sliced completely off the tree and lay across the road,immovable and huge.Even as I found myself weeping through the rain ,I knew there had been a spiritual breakthrough.I thanked the Lord for his Grace.When the storm was over four young guys came to haul the log and could not move it an inch.Ultimately,they had to cut it into pieces with a hack before they could move it to the side to clear the road. I watched it all with a joy in my heart.
In the evening I received this Christian newsletter in the email.

What struck me was the message caption-“God wants to tell you…”

So I immediately opened my mail and this is what it read-

“I am for you,I love you,I believe in you.I will not fail you.I will provide for you.I will bless you.I will give you rest.I will strengthen you.I will answer you.”

The next morning all the patients I had been struggling with, the entire week, and had been part of the reason for my discouragement were all healed….my papers had moved from the GMC……and the spirit had moved to change hearts….suddenly all of it did not matter….my heart sang,it was and has always been, between my God and me!.

Later,I came to know that the preaching that Sunday was on Roman’s 8, ‘Life through the spirit’.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Gift called 'vulnerability'!

Maghe Ram is eighteen but with a mental age of a five year old.He was brought to the casualty with hyperthermia and in severe respiratory distress.The moment I saw him I thought he looked familiar ,till it struck me that all patient's with Down's syndrome look the same.
His vulnerability brought with it a gift of compassion .Even as we tried to bring down his temperature and relieve him of the distress ,we decided to pray for him.
Alem prayed ,while I placed my hand on his head ,when we opened our eyes we saw tears in his eyes.Even as we blinked away our own tears ,we had a deep peace in our hearts.Next morning his fever was down and he was sitting up on his bed,his distress relieved.
Each time we come for rounds , my heart lifts up at the sight of him because these days there are  few things that make me cry........
I was thinking tomyself ,how precious are the vulnerable,they keep furrows of our heart dug and soft!

Friday, June 15, 2012

This week!

The last week has been overwhelming .With Sushil headed for Vellore,the bulk of the medicine load has left me 50% functional.Thanks to Alem who has been a big help.Yesterday a sardarjee was wheeled into the casualty with a history of snakebite in his last breath ,gasping .We resuscitated him and put him on the ventilator.To start with his pupils were dilated and fixed,half the relatives had a mind to put a stop to it all then.One educated youth decided to persist and go on with whatever we were doing.48 hrs later he is sitting on his bed and eating chapatti and subji whilst his brother who had sort of given up was emotional.His son who must be in his twenties worked as a nurses assistant all the while in the ICU,helping the sisters with everything and anything,I suppose a helpful person by nature.It was almost comical to hear the sardarjee grumble as soon as we had extubated him about how the whole day while he was on the ventilator he had asked for some water to drink and nonone had bothered to give it to him.Paramjit shared the gospel with him.
This morning Raja gave a beautiful sermon on adoption and inheritance alligning it with Baby Adam's story.
Life goes on in HCH,between patients,students,duties,RCP,GMC and the uncertainities of the lord's plan and will in our lives.
All the more better,it is during these times when we are out of our depths that we pray harder and we continue to pray till on prayer alone we live.
Thank you Lord!where would we be without the privellage to be able to come to you on our knees!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sweeter than honey!

Mrs S fell into my plate for counselling entirely by accident.Her daughter had consumed poison and was admitted in the ICU.Paramjeet our physiotherapist and a local pastor with a heart for evangelism happened to chance upon her crying.He requested me to talk to her.She seemed to be a mass of nerves.The wound of having lost her husband four years ago seemed very fresh and with three teenagers in a tow, life was not any easier for her.She seemed agitated ,upset,confused and absolutely hay-wire.
I started by listening to her even as she poured out her struggles amidst the chaos of the sobs....when she had finished I gently introduced a suggestion for her need to be stiil if she wanted her children to feel secure.One thing led to another and when I mentioned the name Jesus,suddenly her faced cleared ,for a moment she gained ground and full of joy she recounted how in her school days her friends had taken her along for fellowship and how she had been so much a part of it.With time the world,her marriage and everything else had taken precedence over it and she had forgotten all about it...
She had tasted the sweetness of Jesus.I gave her a gospel,overjoyed......my hardened heart melted by the fresh onslaught of the thing most beautiful!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

"Turn thou me and I shall be turned."

I was sitting in the home of a kindly senior couple who had invited us for dinner when a family breezed in.The young kid had just finished his tenth with a 65% marks and was in a delimna because the school he had applied for needed him to get a higher marks for the science stream he wanted to take up.I was requested to counsel the kid as to what he should go about doing.Even as I started putting the various options before him every nerve in my body protested but I continued nevertheless saying what I thought was the safe thing .
Even as the board exam results are out and there is a lot of hue and cry as to who has passed and who has not and I see a lot of parents tensed up for their wards I watch it all in a relatively detatched manner and pity the children who seem to have no idea as to where it is all leading them.
Strangely enough the picture of a group of skulls standing in a queue....getting up in the morning,going for walk,coming back,watching TV...sleeping and again starting the next day in the same manner comes to my mind.
I actually heave a sigh of relief at some of them who have managed to flunk!Here it is another chance for them to actually get educated and really decide what they want to do for the rest of their lives if their parents,neighbours and people around let them be, to enjoy some time out,to really decide what they want to do. I hope they actually understand that it is a second oppurtunity for them to decide,to reflect and to enjoy the process of getting educated instead of beingpushed around by what people expect them to be.
I have no idea what it would be like if I had a kid of my own ,but I am not sure at this point whether I would be happy with an 'A' grader without an imagination.
The other day my friend was sharing with me about how her little daughter so wanted to join a particular school because her cousin was, in the coming year.This school is an up-market American school which no doubt has a wonderful curriculum but.....
The little girl in question is a beautiful sensitive child who has been brought up well and has always been for me a sort of example I put across for little growing up girls.I am not really sure what more the school in question can put into her apart from the american accent .I might be wrong.
I remember my time pretty well to this day.
I had a fascination for the white coat profession.My mother has still preserved those paper after paper prescriptions I have written as a child signed Dr.Tenzing.Dr.Livingstone and Albert Sweitzer fuelled my tender mind into envisioning what I wanted to do in life.
After my high school,just a few months before taking my infant steps into the world I had always dreamt of, I gave my life to Jesus.
He took over from there.
I don't remember a time when my parents were worked up over anything.To my eyes it looked like they were just watching the whole thing from the sidelines,passive.
I know better,they were on their knees for me.They never pressurised me ,never demanded..they were just there,keenly observing.
They have in the crucial time of my life said a word or two as a suggestion,sometimes entirely unexpected which have been a guiding light to the choices I have made in my life and they have been important choices...one such was the decision I made to travel south to have a look at Oddanchattram....that was from my father.
Dr KV,whom I have always considered as my mentor, left me another legacy I carry with me and deem it precious.
He put in me this concept of sabbatical.A time of rest ,a time of reflection and a time of realigning oneself every now and then ...this has lead me in good stead.It has taught me to step back,look at myself objectively,to release,to grow,to listen ,to understand and to be moved.
I am not there yet but with Christ in the vessel I will surely get there oneday.