Thursday, June 10, 2010

Beware of the Deadly Curve

Why do you make me angry by worshiping idols and by sacrificing to other gods here in Egypt, where you have come to live?

--Jeremiah 44:8

Watch out for the trend!

As an adolescent, Rene was a pious young man. He used to pray everyday, and served the church in his hometown as an acolyte whenever he can. To him, serving the Lord was his ticket out of poverty.

Seven years later Rene graduated from college with honor. Being one of the top students, he didn’t find it hard to land a high paying job in the business district of Makati. His life took a sudden curve upward; life started to look better. From his first paycheck, he gave 10% of his net income back to the Lord by donating this to the renovation in his hometown church. Rene felt that God put him where he was at the particular moment and for a particular reason, so he served Him back in his new capacity. He felt so blessed.

Then waves of promotion came as Rene worked hard on his way to the top of the corporate ladder. Before he knew it, he was already a manager at a very young age of 30. Life looked even brighter from his new vantage point. From his first paycheck as a manager, he donated 10% of his net income to an orphanage. Rene felt great; from a humble farm boy to a corporate manager…not bad!

But as soon as he dipped his toes to the cold waters of the corporate world, Rene was swept away by a whirlpool of works, and high expectations from higher management. He reported to work early, and leave late at night to handle the new workload. He struggled hard to please his boss. The pressure soon became so terrible that he forgot his hometown, the church and his God; all that mattered to him then was his status, his boss, and the money that goes to his bank account. To cope up with pressure he started to smoke, to hangout in bars and beerhouses with officemates whom he avoided before because of their questionable activities, and to go out with different women of questionable moral.

Rene’s life took a downward curve. His blessing turned into a curse. This went on for several years until one day he woke up with a terrible hangover, a woman he couldn’t recall the name sleeping on his bed, and a picture of Jesus hanging by the wall, looking at him with love in His eyes. That picture was always there, but he didn’t notice it before. Suddenly, Rene was flooded with feeling of shame, and remorse. He cried like a child, and couldn’t stop himself. Not even the scantily-clad woman who left hastily thinking that he lost his mind, could console him. Through his tears he realized that he had offended a holy, loving God, and that he left a trusted shepherd, straight to the wolves. “I’m so sorry, Lord” was all he could say over and over again.

As the last tears dropped, he once again felt that familiar peace in his heart.

PS: It’s not bad to dream for a better life, and to pray for it. Just make sure to hold on tighter to God when your dreams come true lest the wolves will get you. If the glitters of your blessing shine so bright, squint your eyes if you must, but never forget the source of your blessing, you’re God.

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